Skip to main content

Full text of "Folk lore notes"

See other formats

3 1822 00130 1688 






R. E. ENTHOVEN, ci.E, i.c.3. 











R. E. ENTHOVEN, ci.E., i.cs. 

.-^ ^-^->~ 


19 15 







Nature Powers. page 

Worship of minor local deities. Sun-worsliip. The Snastika, Circumambulation 
rouiid'iinages and other sacred objects. Moon-worship. Days of special importance. 
Eclipses. Worship of planets and stars. The milky way. The rainbow. Worship 
of the earth. Thunder and lightning. Earthquakes. Worship of sacred rivers, 
springs and pools. Water spirits and goblins. Ceremonies at digging of wells. 
Well water as a cure for disease. Sacred Lakes. Palaces under the water. Sacred 
mountains. Deities who control the weather. Methods of causing or averting rain 
and of checking storms. Vratas or religious vows practised only by women. Rites 
in which women are excluded. Rites in which the worshipper must be nude. 
Superstitions in connection with aerolites and meteors ... ... ... 1 

r/i« Heroic Codlings. 
Village deities. Local deities. Installation of deities in new settlements. Ghostly 
godlings. Deities responsible for crops and cattle ... ... ... 21 

Disease Deities. 
Causes of epidemic diseases and the remedies adopted to stop them. Cattle 
diseases. Remedies practised by the village people in connection with them. The 
methods for the exorcism of disease. Methods of expelling evil spirits frpm the body. 
The village sorcerer. Offerings of rags, coins, etc., at sacred trees and wells. The 
transferring of disease from one person to another. Scapegoats ... ... ... 29 


The worship of Ancestors and Saints. 
Shrdddhas and other ceremonies performed for tlie propitiation and emancipation 
of the deceased. Worship of the founders of religious sects, of saints, etc. Ghosts. 
Rebirth of ancestors in the same family. Miracle-working tombs. Muhammadan 
saints whose worship has been adopted by Hindus, Rural methods for the cure of 
barrenness ... ... 


The Worship of the malevolent dead. 
Popular notions about dreams. Auspicious and inauspicious dreams. Temporary 
abandonment of the body by the soul. Character and functions of the bhzit or 
disembodied soul. The state of the soul after death. The rebirth of the soul. The 
souls of persons dying a sudden or violent death. The ways by which ghosts 
enter and leave the bcdy. Methcds of driving away evil spirits from the body. 
Reliefs regarding sr.eezing ard yawning. Edkshasa cr the malevolent demon. 
Other malignant spirits. Evil spirits which go about headless. Tie haunts of evil 



spirits. Ghosts of \V!o:neii dying an unnatural death. Spirits of persons killed by 
tigers and other wild blasts. Ghosts of women dying in childbed or menses. Precau- 
tions taken by parents at the birth of children. Beliefs in connection with bats and 
owls. Spirits which hiuat niins, guard buried treasure and occupy valleys ... 


The evil eye and ihe scaring of ghosts. 
Effects of the evil eye. Objects liable to be influenced by the evil eye. Precautions 
taken to evade the influence of the evil eye. Opprobrious names. Change of sex. 
Protection against evil spirits. Amulets. Charmed circles. Omens. Numbers, Lucky 
and unlucky days. Rites performed to help ihe soul to the other world. Cremation 
and burial. The customs of shaving the liair. Offerings of food to the dead. Mani- 
festation of evil spirits in form. The practice of breaking earthen vessels at death. 
Rites comieeted with mourning. Benevolent spirits. Spirits which haunt trees. The 
guardian spirits of crops and cattle. Spirits invoked to frighten children 


Tree and Serpent worship. 

Trees connected with deities and saints. Legends and superstitions connected 

with them. Marriage of brides and bridegooms to trees. Snake worship. Slirines 

of snake deities. Deified snakes. Suakes guarding treasure. The village treatment 

of snake-bite. The jewel in the head of the snake. Guardian snakes 


Totemism and Fetishism. 
Devaks. Names derived from animals and plants. Sacred animals. Deities 
associated with animal worship. Worship of stocks and stones. Survivals of human 
sacrifice. Disease-curing stones. Respect shown to corn sieves, corn p3unders, the 
broom and the plough. Fire worship. 


Animal worship. 
Sacred .animals and the legends and superstitions connected with them 



Cketaks and Cketakins. 








Rural ceremonies connected with agricultural operations. Rites performed for 
the protection of c Utle. Rites performed for searing nj.Kious animils and insects. 
Rites performed for ensuring sunshine and favourable weather. Rites performed 
for the protection of crops. Rites in which secrecy and silence are observed. 
The observances at the HoU festival. Rites performed! when boys and girls attain 

puberty. Vows. The black art , 87 

Glossary of vernacular terms occurring in Volumes I and II ... ... i to xsxvii 




HTHE worship of minor local deities is con- 
nected with sucli low castes as Guravas, 
Bhopis, Maratha Kunbis, Dhangars, Waghes, 
Murlis, Mahiirs and Mangs in the District of 
Kolhapur, It is believed by the Brahmans 
that once an image is consecrated and wor- 
shipped, it should be worshipped uninterrupt- 
edly every day, and he who neglects to wor- 
ship such an image daily incurs the sin of 
Brahma-hat i/a or Brahman-murder. For this 
reason Brahmans generally do not worship 
minor local deities. In former times Brahmans 
who worshipped these deities were excommuni- 
cated by their caste-men. Such Pujdris were 
compelled to wear a folded dhotur or waist 
cloth, and were forbidden to put wn the gandh 
or sandal paste mark in straight or cross lines. 
They were allowed to put on the iila or circu- 
lar mark of sandal paste. Another reason why 
Brahmans are not the Pujdris or worshippers 
of such deities is that Brahmans cannot accept 
or partake of the Kaivedya offering of cooked 
food, fowls, etc., made to them. Lower class 
people can partake of such oflFerings, and are 
therefore generally the worshippers or minist- 
rants of minor local deities. 

At Palshet in the Ratnagiri District, there 
are two grdmdevis^ viz., Jholai and Mharjai, 
and thie pujdris of these deities are respect- 
ively a Gurav and a Mahar.i The pujdris of 
goddesses are generally men of the lower 
castes. The guirdian goddesses of the vil- 
lages of Pule, Varavade, Nandivade, and Rila 

have Kunbis as their pujdris ; while the pujdris 
of the goddesses Mahalakshmi, Bhagvati, 
Mahakali, and Jogai are generally chosen from 
the Gurav caste.- In the Konkan the R.iiils 
(Shudras) are the pujdris of the deities Vithoba, 
Ravalnath and Bhavani ; the Ghadis are the 
pujdris of the deities Sateri and Khavanesh- 
war; while the deities Mahadev and Maruti 
are worshipped by pujdris belonging to the 
Gurav caste.'' The goddesses jMakhajan and 
Jakhmata at Sangameshwar in the Ratnagiri 
District are worshi)>ped by pujdris who belong 
to the Gurav and Blioi castes respectively. 
The god Ganpali at Makhnele has for his 
pujdri a Wani. The pujdris of the temple of 
Shiva at Lanje in the Ratnagiri District are 
Wanis.* It is said that the pujdri of Punda- 
rik at Pandharpur is a Kirata (fisherman) by 
caste. ^' 

The pujdri of the goddess Narmata at Sid- 
gad in the Thana District is a Koli; whilst 
the pujdiis of Kanoba, Khandoba, and Vetal 
are of the lower castes. <> The goddesses 
Mahalakshmi of Kolvanand Vajreshvari have 
their pujdris chosen from the lower castes. ^ 
The pujdris of Jari-J\Iari,MIiasoba, Bahiroba, 
Clieda and other deities which are said to 
prevent contagious diseases, are alwaj-s men 
of the lower castes.- ^ 

The pujdris of the guardian goddesses of 
the villages Petsai, Dasgaum and Nizampur 
are a Mahar, a Kumbhar or potter, and a 
Maratha, respectively. " The pujdri of tlie 

1 School Master, Palshet, RatQugiri. 
3 School Master, Parule, Ratmlgiri. 
5 School Master, R;ijlipnr, Ratnagiri. 
J School Master, Malad, ThSna. 

3 School Master, 

2 School Master, Adiv^re, Ratniigiri. 
« School Master, Makhnele, Ratniigiri. 
5 School Masters, Agashi and Arnala, Thana. 
8 School Master, Shah-ipur, Thina. 
Dasgaum, KoWba. 


guardian goddesses of Chaul in the Kolaba 
District belongs to the lower castcs.i The 
goddess Mangai has always a Mahar as her 
jmjdri.- Everyday the god Shiva is required 
to be worshipped first by a pujdri of the Gurav 
caste. The pujuri of Bahiri, a corruption of 
the word Bhairav, one of the manifestations 
of Shiva, is a man belonging to the lower cas- 
tes. Similarly the pujdris of Bhagavati, Bha- 
vani, Ambika, Kalika, Jakhai, Jholai, Janni, 
Kolhai, Vadyajai, Shitaladevi, Chandika, etc., 
are persons belonging to lower castes.^ 

It is considered by the Hindus very me.ri- 
torious and holy to worship the Sun ; and by 
Brahmans the Sun is considered to be their 
chief deity. The 'Gayairi Mantra of the 
Brahmans is a prayer to the Sun-gad or the 
Savita Dev, and' the Brahmans offer arghija 
' or oblations of water to the Sun thrice a day. 
Those who want health, wealth and prosperity 
propitiate the Sun-god by prayers and cere' 
monies. The Hatha Saptami is considered to 
be the principal day for special worship and 
festivities in honour of the Sun-god. On this 
day» on a low wooden stool, is drawn, in red 
sandal paste, a figure of the Sun in human 
shape seated in a chariot drawn by seven 
liorses, or by a horse with seven faces. This 
.figure is then placed in the sun-shine, and it is 
then worsliipped by ofi'ering it arghya or 
spoonfuls of water, red powder, red flowers 
mixed with red sandal paste, camphor, incense 
and fruits. Some people kneel dawn while 
ofi'ering the arghyas to the Sun. These 
arghyas are either three qr twelve in number. 
Same persons make a vow not to eat anything 
unless they have worshipped the Sun and per- 
formed the twelve Namaskaras by falling 
prostrate and bowing with folded hands twelve 
limes, and at each time repeating one of the 
twelve names of the Sun.* 

In the Ratnagiri District some people 
worship the Sun on the Sundays of the 
month of ^hrdian, A ceremony lield on the 
Ralhasaptami day, ie,^ the 7th day of the 
bright half of Mdgh, is deemed a s))ccial 
festival in honour of tlic Sun-god. On that 
day people draw, on a small wooden stool, 
an image of the Sun, seated in a chariot 
drawn by seven horses, and worship it with 
great reverence. Milk is then boiled on a 
fire made of cow-dung cakes in front of the 
household Tulsi plant. If the milk over- 
flows to the east, it is believed that tliere 
will be abundance of crops, but if it flows 
to the west it is taken as a sign of the near 
approach of famine. •* The Sun-god is also 
worshipped on tlie follo'wing occasions, ^.g., 
Trikal^ Gajacchdya^ Ardhodaya^ Mahodaya, 
Vyalipdt^ MaharSankrdnt ^ Kark-Sankrdnt 
and the Solar eclipse. ^ Though there are 
few temples dedicated to the Sun, the vil- 
lage of Parule has the honour of having One 
called " the temple of Adi-Narayan." Xon- 
Brahmanical classes are not seen worshipp- 
ing the Sun in this district, despite the 
fact that the Sun is said to be the embodi- 
ment of the three principal deities of the 

The people of the Thana District believe 
that the Swastika is the central point of the 
helmet of the Sun, and a vow; called the 
Swastika Vrata is held in its honor. A woman 
who observes this vo^v, draws a figure of the 
Swastika and worships it daily during the 
Chdturmds (four months of the rainy season), 
at the expiration of which she gives a Brah- 
man a golden or silver plate with the sign of 
the Swastika upon it.'' Another vow named 
Dhanurmds , common to all districts in the 
Konkan, requires a person to complete his 
daily rites before sun-rise, and to offer a 

1 School Master, Chaul, KoWba. 

2 School Master, Poladpur, Koli'iba. 

* These twelve names are : — 1 Mitra, 2 Ravi, 3 
8 Marichi, 9 Aditya, 10 Savita, 11 Arka, 12 Bhasker, 
4 School Master, Phonden. 
6 School Master. Parule. 

2 School Master, Akola, Kolaba. 

Surya, 4 Bhanu, 5 Khaga, 6 Pushne, 7 Hiranyagarbha. 

5 School Master, DevaruUh. 
1 School Master, Anjur. 


preparation of food called Khichadi to the 
Sun-god. The observer of this vow then par- 
takes of the food, regarding it as a gift from 
that god. This is either done for one day or re- 
peated for a month till the Dhanu-Sankrdnt .'^ 
On the Somavaii-Amdvdsya day (the 15th 
day of the dark half of a month falling on 
Monday), and the Kapildshasihi day, the Sun 
is held in especial reverence.-^ A curious story 
is narrated regarding the offering of Arghya 
to the Sun. It is said that the Sun rejoices at 
the birth of a Brahman, and gives 1,000,000 
cows in charity, believing that the Arghya 
which the Brahman will offer later on will 
devour his foes, one drop of the Argiiya 
killing 1,000 of them*. The repetition of the 
Gdyatri-mantra 108 times a day is supposed to 
release a Brahman from the debt of 1,000,000 
cows owed in this way to the Sun. ^ The 
Yoga-Sutras of Patanjali however prohibit a 
man from looking at the setting Sun, though 
the sin thus incurred is made amends for 
by the offering of Arghya to that god. * It is 
interesting to note that women do not grind 
corn on the RathaSaptami day. ^ 

Women bow down to the Sun on the llth, 
12th, 30th or 40th day after their delivery; 
but Kunbi women generally worship that god 
on the 7th day.** On this occasion some 
women show a churning handle'!' to the Sun- 
god and offer him some grains of rice.'^ 

The Swastika is considered so holy in the 
Konkan that it is always drawn on the 
Antarpat ; and at the time of the Punydha 
Waclian ceremony which precedes a Hindu 
wedding, a Swastika drawn in rice is worship- 
ped.^ The principal deities of the Hindus, 
whenever they are invoked on special occa- 

sions, are seated on the Srvastika.^ The people 
of the Ratnagiri District worship the Stvastika, 
regarding it as the symbol as well as the seat 
of the Sun-god.^" 

By some the Sivastika is regarded as the 
foundation-stone of the universe^^ and is held 
to be the symbol of the god Shiva, and not 
of the Sun. 12 

The conception of Kunbi is said to have 
taken place by the influence of the rays of 
the Sun. 13 

The Stvastika is considered as an emblem 
of peace and prosperity, and for this reason 
Brahman women draw a figure of the Swast- 
ika in front of their houses. ^* The custom of 
moving round such sacred objects as the Ban- 
yan, the Pipal, the Tulsi or sweeb basil plant, 
the Umbar^thc Avala (Pliylanthus emblica), 
etc., is prevalent in the district of Kolhapur. 
There are no cases recorded in which women 
after child-birth are exposed to the Sun. But 
on the 1 2th day after her delivery, the mother 
puts on new bangles and new clothes ; cocoa- 
nuts, betel-nuts and leaves, grains of rice, 
plantains and grains of wlieat are placed in her 
lap. She then comes out and bows to the Sun, 
Wealthy persons on this occasion perform a 
homa sacrifice in their houses by kindling the 
holy fire and feeding Brahmans. No one in 
this district believes that conception is caused, 
or is likely to be caused, by exposure to the 
rays of the Sun. 

The Hindu women of the Konkan walk 
round Pipal, Tulsi, and Vmbar trees every 
Saturday and on the Somavati-amdvdsya day, 
i.e., the 15th day of the dark half of a month 
when it falls on Monday .i'' Sometimes, how- 
ever, women make a vow to walk round a 

1 School Master, Vasind. 
3 School Master, Malad. 

5 School Master, Padaghe. 

* 33,000,0000 demons are said to be born every day 

6 School Master, Chau), Kolaba. 

8 School Master, Mithbav, Ratnagiri. 
1" School Master, Pendhur, Milvan, Ratndgiri. 
12 School Masters, Chauk, Karjat, Koldba, 
w Rao Saheb Shelke. 
■}• The churning handle or rod is called in Mardthi 

- School Master, Malad. 

1 School Masters, Agashi and Arnala. 

to impede the journey of the Sun. 
1 School Master, Nevare, Ratnagiri. 
9 School Master, Makhanele, Ratnagiri. 
11 School Masters, Agashi and ArnSla. 
13 School Masters, Chauk, Karjat, Kolaba, 
15 School Master, Malgund, Ratnagiri. 
Ravi, which is one of the names of the Sun. 


temple or a sacred tree one-hundred tbou-sand 
times ; and for the fulfilment of tliis vow they 
Walk round the temple or tree for about seven 
or eight hours every day. If they find it 
difficult tO' make up the number of rounds 
themselves, they ask their near relations to 
assist them in their undertaking.^ 

The Moon is worshipped by the Hindus on 
the 2nd of the bright half of cverj' month. 
On this day it is considered very lucky to see 
the moon, and many people, particularly the 
lower classes, pull out threads from the clothes 
they wear, and offer them to the moon, saying 
''O! God, accept these old clothes of ours 
and be pleased to give us new ones in their 
stead." Some people worship the moon on the 
iSankasti C hat itrthi ■{th day o( the dark half 
of every month; and such people will not 
eat anything until they have seen and worship- 
ped the moon on that day. The moon is 
not worshipped on the Gaiiesh Chaturtlii day 
that is, the 4th of the bright half of the month 
of Bhddrupud, as it is considered very unlucky 
to see the moon on that night. It is firmly 
believed that any one who sees the moon on 
the Ganesh Chaturthi day even by accident wiU 
be falsely accused of theft or some other crime. 
In order to avoid this, people who have accident- 
ly seen the moon, throw stones at the houses of 
their neighbours, and if the neighbours abuse 
them in return, the mischicfmakers consider 
themselves freed by the abuse from the sin of 
having looked at the moon on a forbidden night. 

The spots on the surface of the moon are 
believed by some to be the rath or chariot of 
the god. Others think that they are lunar 
mountains ; but many believe that the spots are 
the visible signs of the sLain on the character 
of the moon-god due to his having outraged the 
modesty of the wife of his gurti^ the god Bra- 
haspati or Jupiter. In tlie Purdiis it is stated 
that on one occasion, a dispute arose between 

the moon and Brahaspali or Jupiter about the 
wife of Brahaspati, each of them claiming to 
be the cause of her conception. Subscqucnlh- 
a son was born who was named Budha (Mer- 
cury). Brahaspati's wife, on being asked who 
was tlie fatlicr of the child, named the moon. 
Thereupon Brahas])ati cursed the moon for his 
adultery. The spots on the surface of the 
moon arc said to be the effect of this curse. 

The moon-god is believed to distribute nectar 
through his rays, and therefore this deity is 
said to have the power of removing diseases and 
restoring human beings to health. The moon 
is the king of herbs, and all trees, plants, etc., 
thrive owing to the influence of the moon. 
Sometimes people place at night, figs, plan- 
tains, sugarcane and other eatables in tlie moon- 
light and eat them early in the morning ; and 
it is said that those who do so improve in health. 
The practice of drinking the moon's rays does 
not prevail in the Kolhapur district. But 
people occasionally dine in the moon light. - 

On a full moon day people perform the 
special worship of their chosen deity. On the 
full moon of the month of Kartika temples are 
illuminated, and on the fuU moon day of 
Mdgha^ raw corn such as wheat, bdjri^ etc., is 
cooked and offered to the household and other 
deities.* On this day are also perfornud the 
special rites and ceremonies that are required 
in connection with the Kula-devatds or family 
gods or goddesses. On the full moon day of 
Fdlgiina the Holi fire is kindled and worship- 
ped. In certain families the full moon of 
Chaitra is considered auspicious for making 
offerings to family deities. On the full moon 
day of JShidvan is observed the feast of 
Coeoanut day, and on this day Brahmans put 
on new sacred threads. The full moon is 
considered by the Sani/dsis or ascetics an 
auspicious day for shaving their heads. 

' School Master, Plioade, Katnagiri. 2 Rao Sahib Shelke. 

• In the Konkaa the Navdnna Purnima or full moon day of new food is observed in the month 
of Ashwina. This is, no doubt, due to the diiTerence in the season of the harvest. 


On the new moon day the Pitras or 
Manes are worshipped. Lighted lamps are 
worshipped on the new moon day, of 
'Ashddha, In the Kolhapur State this is 
called Tadali new moon day, and in the 
Konkan it is called Divali new moon day. 
On the new moon day of Ashwin^ Lakshmi 
the goddess of wealth is worshipped. All 
special ceremonies for the propitiation of the 
Bhutas or evil spirits are usually performed 
on the new moon day. The Dwitii/a or 2nd 
day of every mouth is considered sacred to 
the moon, and on this day the moon is 
worshipped ; while the Chaturthi is con- 
sidered sacred to the god Ganapati, and on 
the Chaturthi of Bhadrapada a special festival 
is held in honour of the god Ganpati. i 

On the 15th day of the bright half of 
the month of Aslhvin people put milk in the 
rays of the moon for some time, and then, 
after offering it to the moon, they drink it. 
Drinking milk in this way is called drinking 
the rays of the moon. 2 On the Sankrdnt Cha- 
turthi day and on that Chaturthi which 
immediately follows the Dasara holiday, 
people draw an image of the moon and 
worship it. * In the Ratnagiri district 
several conflicting theories are h'eld regard- 
ing the spots on the surface of the moon. 
Some believe that the spot observed on the 
moon is a tamarind tree in which that god 
lias stationed himself ; others hold that the 
spot is the reflection of a deer which is 
yoked to the chariot of the moon.^; while 
many more believe that it has been occasioned 
by the hoof of the horse of King Nala. 
Some say that the sjjot on the surface of 
the moon represents a Pipal tree and a 
cow fastened to the roots of the tree; 
others on the authority of Hindu mythology 

suppose that God created Madan (cupid) 
from the essence taken from the body of the 
moon and hence the moon-god has spots on 
his body. 5 In the Mahdhhdrat it is stated that 
on the surface of the moon is reflected the is- 
land of Sudarshan on this earth, together with 
some trees and a great hare, the bright part 
being nothing but water.'^ The spot on the 
surface of the moon is considered by some a 
deer which the god has taken on his lap.^ 
Some believe that Yashoda, the mother ofi 
Krishna, after waving an earthen dish round' 
the face of Krishna, threw it at the sky. It 
struck the moon and thereby the spots on the 
surface of the moon were caused. Nectar is 
supposed to have been derived from the rays 
of the moon ; and in some sacred books it is 
stated that the Chakora bird (Bartavelle 
Partridge) drinks the rays of the moon.^ 

The people of the Thana District hold simi- 
lar notions regarding the spots on the surface 
of the moon. It has been said by some that 
the portion in question represents mud, while 
others say that the moon has been disfi- 
gured owing to a curse from a sage. ^ Some 
people say that the spots are due to the moon 
being cursed by his preceptor Brahaspati with' 
whose wife the moon-god had connection,^ 
Being unable to bear the pain of the spots, the 
moon, it is said, propitiated his preceptor, who 
directed him to bathe in the Bhima river toi 
alleviate the agony. Accordingly the pain 
was assuaged, and the part of the river where 
the Moon-god bathed thus came to be called 
Chandra hhdga, ^^ Some persons suggest that 
the spots are a Pipal tree with two deer feed- 
ing upon it from two sides-"^^ j Others hold that 
the spots on the surface of the moon are due to 
its having been kicked by a deer which, when 
pursued by a hunter, was refused shelter. ^^ 

1 Rao Saheb, Shelke. 
3 School Mster, Gaumkhadi, Rajdpur. 
5 School Master, Dabhol, Ratnagiri. 
^ School Master, Ubh^danda, Vengurla. 
9 School Master, Murbad. 
U School Master, Wada. 

2 School Master, Ibhrdmpur. 

* School Master, Adivare, R^jilpur, 

6 School Master, Ratnagiri. 

8 School Master, Ratnagiri. 

w School Master, Vasind, Sahdpur, 

^ School Master, Edvan, Mahim^ 


The people of the Tliana District believe that 
the rays of the moon influence conception. * 

In the Kolaba District, to sit in an open 

place on a moon-light night, is regarded as 
drinking the rays of the moon. * The elon- 
gated part of the orb of the moon pointing 
towards the north or the south is supposed to 
forebode scarcity or abundance, respectively.^ 

It is a common belief that the moon should 
not be seen on the Ganesh Chaturthi day, 
i.e., the 4th day of the bright half of Bhddra- 

Looking at the moon continuously for a 
short time on every moon light night is said 
to keep one's sight in good order.* 

If the Amdvdsya falls on ^Monday, Brahman 
women of the Thana District walk round a 
Tiilsi plant or a Pipal tree and make a vow 
to a Brahman,® 

In the Kolaba District a special ceremony 
is held in honour of minor goddesses on the 
8th day of a month. The following things 
are avoided one on each of the fifteen tithis 
respectively : — 

Kohala (pumpkin) dodi (Solanum indicura,) 
salt, sesamum, souir things, oil, dvale (Emhlic 
myrobalan), cocoanuts, bhopala (gourd), 
padval (snake-gourd), pai'/e(Doliclios Lablah) 
viasiir (Lens esculenta) bvinjal, honey, gam- 
bling. '^ 

The people observe a fast on the 13th 
(Prndosiia) and the 14th day (Shivardtra) of 
the dark half of every month.'' On the 15Lh 
day of the bright half of Chaitra, a fair is 
held in honour of the guardian deity of a 
village, and hens, goats, etc., are offered as a 

The following are days of special importance. 

Gudhi-pddva, i.e., the first day of the bright 
half of Chaitra: — This being the first day of 
the year, gudhis and toranas are hoisttd in 
f/ont of eveTy honse and are ■woishipped." 

Bhdu-bij : — On the 2nd day of the bright 
half of Kdrtik every sister waves round the 
face of her brothtr a lamp, and makes him a 
present. ^** 

The ceremony on the Bhdu-bij day has come 
into vogue on account of Subhadra having 
given a very pleasant bath to her brother 
Krishna on that day. The Court of Yama is 
also said to be closed on that day, since he 
goes to his sister; and conseqnently per- 
sons who die on that day, however sinful they 
may be, are not supposed to go to Yamalola 
i. e., hell.ii 

Akshya Triiiya: — On the third day of 
the bright half of Vaishdhh cold water and 
winnowing fans are distributed as tokens for 
appeasing the Manes of ancestors. On this 
daj' is also celebrated the birth of the god 

Ganesh Chaturthi: — On the 4tli day of 
the bright half of Bhddrapad, an earthen 
image of Ganpati is worshipjied and a great 
ceremony is held in his honour. is The fourth 
diy of the bright half of every month is called 
Vindyaka-Chaturihi; while that of the dark 
half is calkd Sankasfi-Chaturthi. On the 
Vindyaha-Chaturthi day, people fast the whole 
day and dine the next diy ; while on the 
Sanhasti Chaturthi day, they fast during' the 
day time and dine after moon-rise.** That 
Sanhasti Chaturthi which falls on Tuesday is 
considered the best.^^ 

1 School Master, Kalyan, No. 1 and School Master, Padaghe, Bbivandi. 

2 School Master, Chidhran, Kolaba. ' School Master, PoWdpur. 

« School Master, Chauk. Kolaba. 5 School Master, Anjur, Th5na, 

c School Master, Chauk, Kolaba. ^ School Master, Poladpur. 

8 School Master. Pol.idpur, Kolaba ° School Master, Basani, Ratmigiri. 

" School Master, Basani, Ratnagiri. " School Master, Pendur, Malvan, Raln;igiri 

« School Master. Basani. Ratnagiri. « School Master, Basani, Katnfigiri. 

« School Master, Malgund, Ratnigiri. "= School Master, Ubhadanda. Vengurla, 


Ndgpanchami:~On the 5tli day of the 
bright half of Shrdvan^ pictures of serpents 
and snake holes are worshipped.^ 

CkampdShashti:— On the 5lh day of the 
bright half of Mdrgashirsha, soma ceremony 
relating lo the family-deity is performed. 2 

EathaSaptami:— On the 7th day of the 
bright half of Mdgh, the sun is worshipped 
and milk is boiled until it overflows.^ 

Gokul-Ashtami:— On the 8lh day of the 
dark half of Shrdvan the birlh of the god 
Krishna is celebrated.* 

Edma-yavami: — On the 9th day of the 
bright half of Chaitra the birlh of the god 
Rama is celebrated. ° 

Vijayddashmi : — On the lOlh day of the 
bright half of Ashvin peaple cross the boun- 
dary of their village and distribute sone (leaves 
of the Shami and Apia trees) . It is a popular 
belief that a work commenced on this day is 
sure to end well. Weapons are also worshipped 
on this day.** 

Ekddashi: — On the 11th day of Ashddh and 
Kdrtik a special fast is observed. People also 
fast on the 11th day of each month. A man 
who dies on this auspicious day is supposed to 
go to heaven.^ Sometimes the Ehdddsi falls on 
two consecutive days ; in which case the Smar- 
tas observe the first, while the Bhagvats 
observe the second.^ 

Wdinan-dwddashi\ — On the 12th day of 
the bright half of Bhddrapad Waman is wor- 
shipped and one or twelve boys are adored, 
being held to represent Waman. The mar- 
riage of the Tulsi plant is sometimes cele- 
brated on this day." 

Dhana-Trayodashi: — On the 13th day of 
the dark half of AsKwin^ Lakshmi, the 
goddess of wealth is worshipped. ^'^ 

Narak-Chatiirdashi; — On the 14th day ofi 
the dark half of Ashvin^ the demon Narakasur 
was killed. In consequence, on this day people 
take their batli before sun-rise, break Karinta 
(a fruit), regarding it as a demon, and apply 
its seeds lo their heads.^^ 

Ndrali Paurnima: — On the 15th day ofi 
the bright half of Shrdvan^ people worship the 
sea and throw into it a cocoanut.^- 

Wata-Paumima; — On the 15th day of 
the bright half of Jycstha^ women whose hus- 
bands are alive fast the whole day, and worship 
the Waia-iree.^^ 

On the 15th diy of the bright half of 
Ashvin^ people keep themselves awake the 
whole nisrht and amuse themselves in a variety 
of ways. On the 15th day of the bright half ofi 
Kdrtika houses are illuminated. This day is 
called Tripuri-Paurnima. On this night people 
illuminate with earthen lamps all temples in 
the village, but particularly the temple ofi 
Shiva. This is done in commemoration of the 
triumph of the god Shiva over the demon Tri- 
purasura. The full-moon day of the month 
of Mdgha is called Ciiudi Paurnima. On this 
night people light chudies torches and with 
them slightly burn certain flowers, trees and 
plants. The full-moon day of the month ofi 
Fdlguna is called the Holt or Holi-Paurnima 
and is the biggest holiday of the lower class 
Hindus. On this night the Hindus kindle the 
Holi-fire and worship it.i^ On the 15th day of 
the bright half otAskvin people eat grain of the 
new harvest. On the full-moon day of Shrdvan 
they perform the Shrdvani ceremony and give 
a lamp in charily. On the full-moon day ofi 
the month of Chaitra^ Vaishakha and Mdrga- 
shirsha^ the births of Maruli, Narasimha and 
Dattatraya respectively are celebrated.^" The 
Kunbis of the Ratnagiri District believe that 

1 School Master, Basani, Ratnigiri, 

2 School Master, Basani, Ratnagiri, 
^ School Master, Basani, Ratnagiri, 
' School Master, Basani, Ratnagiri. 
9 School Master, Basani, Ratn-igiri. 

"^ School Master, Basani, Ratnagiri. 
'3 School Master; Basani, Ratnagiri 

2 School Master, Basani, Ratnagiri, 
4 School Master, Basani, Ratnagiri, 
6 School Master, Basani, Ratnigiri. 
s School Master, Malgund, Ratnagiri. 
lO School Master, Basani, Ratnigiri. 
" School Master, Basani, Ratnagiri, 
'4 School Master, Bandivade Budruk, Ratnagiri, 

School Master, Pendur, Ratnagiri. 



on llie 15th or full-moon diy of Pausha^ the 
Hindu gods go out hunting and that Ihe.v 
return from their hunting expedition on the 
full-moon day of the month of Mdgha. Dur- 
ing this period the Kunbis abstain from wor- 
shipping their gods.^ 

'Amdvdsya :— On the ISlhdayof the dark 
lialf of every month, oblations are given to the 
Manes of the dead.^ The commencement of a 
good deed, journey to a distant place, and the 
ploughing of land arc postponed on the no- 
moon day of a month.-"' Sanyasis are enjoined 
to get their beard shaved on the Pdurnima and 
'Amdvdsya days only.* 

People do not set out on a journey on the 
following tithis^ regarding them as rihta (un- 
fruitful or inauspicious) ; — 

Chaturthi^ Navami and Chaturdashi.^ 

The Chandrdyana Vrata; — Widows fast 
on the no-moon day of a month. They are 
required to regulate their diet in such an increas- 
ing proportion that on the next full moon 
day they should have a full meal. The reverse 
process follows for a fortnight after, so 
that they observe an absolute fast on the 
f pUowing no-moon day." 

People have various ideas abouit the cause of 

the eclipses of the sun and the moon. Some 

say that the sun and tlie moon are superior 

deities, and that the demons Rahu and Ketu 

who belong to the caste of Mangs attempt 

to touch them and to devour them. Others 

believe that the planets Rahu and Ketu 

stand in the path of the Sun and the Moon 

and thereby darkness is caused on the earth. 

It is believed that about 5 hours before the 

commencement of the obscuration, in the case 

of the Sun and about 4 hours in the 

case of the Moon, the Vedha or malign 

influence of the monsters begins and during 

the period till the whole eclipse is over a 

strict fast is observed. At the commence- 
ment of the eclipse, as well as at its close, 
people bathe. Some sit on a low wooden 
stool with a rosary in their hands repeating 
the names of the gods, or the gdijatri or some 
of the mantras. But those who want to 
acquire the art of magic or witch-craft or the 
power of removing the evil effects of snake- 
poison, or scorpion sting, go to a lonely 
place on tlie riverside, and tliere standing in 
water repeat the mantras taught to them by 
their guru or teacher. People give alms 
to Mahars and Mangs on this occasion, and 
therefore persons of this class go about the 
streets saying loudly "Give us alms and 
the eclipse will be over" De dun suit- girdn, 

A strict fast is observed on an eclipse day, 
but children and pregnant women who 
cannot bear the privation are given some- 
thing to eat under a sihe. The eclipse time 
is so inauspicious that children and animals 
born at that time are considered unlucky. '^ 
Sometimes an eclipse cannot be observed 
owing to the intervention of clouds. On that 
occasion the people of the Konkan resort to 
the following expedient in order to ascertain 
whether the luminary is eclipsed or not. 
They take a potful of water and hold in it 
a musal. If it stands in the pot unsupported 
it is regarded as indicative of the existence 
of an eclipse. Mangs, jMahars, etc., are 
supposed to be the descendants of Rahu 
and Ketu; and for this reason gifts are 
made to them in charity on an eclipse day.* 

The people of the Thana District believe 
that corn grows abundantly in a year that 
witnesses many eclipses." 

The popular cause of an eclipse in the 
Kolaba district, is the Girha, a minor deity 
which is said to wander through the sky 
and swallow the Sun and the Moon when 

1 School Master, Anjarle, Ratn^igiri. " School Master, Ba3ani, Ratniigiri. 

3 School Master, Pendiir, Ratn:igiri. « School Master, Rrijdpur, Ratmigiri. 

6 School Master, Adivare, Ratni'igiri. ^ School Master. Uhhad:inda, Ratniigiri. 

1 School Master, Khetwiidi, A.V. School, Bombay. ^ School Master, Khetwadi, A.V, School, Bombay. 

3 School Master, Padaghe, Thana, 


they cross his path.^ Besides the mytho- 
logical story regarding the cause of an 
eclipse, the people of the Ratnagiri District 
also believe that the Girha tlirows his 
shadow on the sun and the inoon, when 
he comes to demand his dues from them.^ 
The Konkan villagers,, on an eclipse day, 
strike barren trees with a pestle,^ in order that 
they may bear fruits and flowers. A barren 
woman is also beaten with the same motive. 
Similarly many other superstitious beliefs 
are connected with an eclipse. Pregnant 
women are not allowed to see tlie eclipse of 
the sun or the moon, nor are they to engage 
in cutting, sewing, etc. as this is believed to 
be injurious to the child in the womb.'' The 
eclipse time is supposed to be the most 
suitable to learn mantras or incantations.^ 
The mantris also muttler incantations during 
an eclipse in a naked condition,'" The people 
who believe that the eclipses are caused by 
the influence of the planets Rdhu and Ketu 
offer prayers to Rdliu. on the lunar eclipse 
day and to Ketu on the solar eclipse day.^ 

The planets and stars are worshipped by 
the Hindus. It is believed thab a person 
who is to die within six months cannot see 
the polar star. From the movements of the 
planets past and future events of one's 
career are foretold by Brahman and other 
astrologers. Aud as it is believed that man's 
good and bad liick are dependant upon the 
influence of the planets, offerings of various 
kinds are made and sacrifices performed for 
securing the favour of the Navagrahas or the 
nine planets. In order to avert the effect of 
the evil influence of certain planets people 
sometimes wear rings of those precious stones 
which are supposed to be the favourites of 
the planets. 

The rainbow is called Indra dhanushya or 
the Indra's bow, and it is believed that if 

the rain-bow appears in the east, it indicates 
the coming of more rain, and if it appears 
in the west it is a sure sign of the close of 
the monsoon. 

The milky way is believed to be the 
heavenly Ganges. Well known tradition 
relates how Waman (the 5th incarnation of 
VishnuJ Went to Bali the king of the lower 
regions and asked him to give him land 
measuring three feet only. The king con- 
sented, whereupon the god Waman enlarged 
his body to such an extent that by his one 
footstep he occupied the whole earth and by 
the second he occupied heaven. Upon this the 
god Brahma worshipped the foot of the god 
Vishnu which was in heaven, and from that 
foot sprang the hieavemly Ganges which flows 
in heaven and is called Dudha Ganga or the 
milky Ganges. 

The worship of stars and planets is in 
vogue among Konkan Hindu families of the 
higher castes. The polar star in particular 
is seen and worshipped by the bride and 
the bridegroom after the ceremony at the 
marriage altar is over.^ A very interesting 
stjory is connected with the polar star. By 
the great power of his penance the sage 
Vishvamitra despatched king Trishanku to 
Heaven, but the gods hurled him down. 
Thereupon Vishvamitra became enraged and 
began to create a new heaven. Hindu my- 
thological books say that he thus created the 
sages Vashista,, Angiras, Pulah, Pulastya, 
Rutu, Atri, and Marichi, and stationed Tri- 
shanku in the sky. The Nava-grahas or the 
nine planets are worshipped before the com- 
mencement of all important ceremonies, ^ A 
cluster of seven stars called the Sapta-rishis 
are worshipped by men at the time of the 
Shrdvani ceremony, while women worship 
them on the 5th day of the bright half of 

1 School Master, PoUidpur, Kolaba. 
3 School Master, Kalse, Ratnagiri. 
5 School Master, Makhanele, Ratnagiri. 
' School Master, Makhanele, Ratnagiri. 

5 School Master, 

2 School Master, Masuri, Ratnagiri. 

4 School Master, Vijayadurg, Ratnagiri. 
6 School Master, Ubhidt.ida, Ratnagiri. 

5 School Master, Makhanele, Ratnagiri. 
Devarukh, Ratnagiri. 



Bhiuhajjada, i These Sapia-risTiis are said 
to ]iave been created by the God Brahma 
Irom his own body; and teaching them the 
four Vedas, lie handed them over to them 
and askid them to regulate the aflairs of the 
world. - 

Some people of the Rntnagiri District be- 
lieve that the rain-bow is the bow used by 
Rama, the hero of the Eamayana. Its appea- 
rance on the east is regarded by them as 
Symptomatic of the approach of rain, while its 
appearance on the west is equivalent to the 
dejiarlure of rain.^ 

The short duration of the rain bow is held 
to indicate an excessive fall of rain while 
its long duration fori odes a scarcity of 
rain. * The appearance of the rain-bow on 
a river is supposed to indicate the approach 
of rain, while its appearance on a mountain 
means the departure of rain.,'' Of the two 
bows of which the rain-bow seems to be 
composed, the larger is believed to belong 
to Rama, and the smaller to Lakshman. <" 
Since the God Indra is supposed to send 
rain, the Indrad'Uanushya (the rain-bow) is 
regarded as a sign of the advent of rain,'' 

By some Hindus it is believed that the 
milky way is a heavenly river which is a 
favouTite bathing place of the gods.* Others 
suppose it to be a branch of the celestial 
Ganges which is said to have been brought 
down upon this earth by king Bhagiratha.^ 
Some persons, however, believe that since 
the great sage Agastya is said to reside at 
Rameshwar in the southern direction, the 
Ganges (the milky way) runs through the 
sky to the south in order to bathe him. 

Sometimes the milkj' way is believed to be a 
white cloud. I'J 

On the authority of the Mahakala Nirvan 
Tantra, some people of the Thana District 
believe that a person who cannot get a view 
of the polar star will die within six months ; 
while others substitute the Arundhftti star 
for the polar star and determine the duration 
of life of a diseased person by the same 
process. ^^ 

The people of the Thana District believe 
that the rain-bow is caused by the accumula- 
tion of moisture in the air.^- The rain-bow 
is said to consecrate the region over which it 
appears ^*. The appearance of the rain-bow 
in the morning is supposed to forbode the 
approach of rain.i^ 

Some people of the Kolaba District believe 
that the holy persons such as Kashyapa, 
Arundhati and other sages, who lived 
on this earth in ancient times are seen 
shining in the sky by the sacred lustre of 
their powers.i^ Hindu women worship the 
planets Budlia and Guru (Mercury and Jupi- 
ter) in the month of Shravan,^" 

The Sapta-rishis are somewhere called 
Klmtale and Bdjale (cot)^^. The rain-bow 
is held by some to be the symbol of Rama 
and Lakshman, who visit the world in that 
form with the view of watching its proceed- 
ings. Others, however, believe that it re- 
presents God Indra who assumes that form to 
see how his orders are executed by his subor- 
dinates.^® The rain-bow is said to foretell 
good if it appears either at the beginning or 
end of the rainy season, while its appea- 
rance at any other time is supposed to 
forbode evil.^''' 

1 Scliool 

3 School 

^ School 

' School 

9 School 

" School 

'^ School 

15 School 

1" School 

Master, Makhanele, Ratmigiri. - School 

Master, Basani, Ratnagiri, * School 

Master, Navare, Ratniigiri. 6 School 

Master, Malgund, Ratn:1giri. 8 School 

Master, Makhanele, Ratnagiri, w School 

Master, Agilshi and Arnala, Thdna. '2 School 

Master, Badlapur, Thiina. '* School 

Master, Chaul, Kol.'iba, '^ School 

Master, Vavasi, Kohiha. 18 School 

15 School Master, Vavanje, 

Master, Pendur, 
Master, Makhanele, 
Master, Adivare, 
Master, Kankavli, 
Master, Basani, 
Master, Rai, 
Master, Mokhada, 
Master, Kasu, 
Master, Chaul. 




Hindus regard the earth as one of their 
important deities and worship it on various 
occasions. It is enjoined upon Brahmans 
to worship it daih' at the time of their 
Sandhya rite, as well as while performing the 
iihrdiani ceremony.^ The ])eople of the 
Ratnagiri District pray to the earth as soon 
as they leave their bed in the morniiig." 
The earth is required to be worshipped at the 
lime of laying the foundation-stone of a house, 
as well as at the time of bringing into use a 
newly built house. ^ Since it is held unholy to 
sleep on the bare ground, those whose parents 
die, sleep on a woollen cloth on the ground 
till their parents anniversary is over/ M'an- 
prastas, Sanyasis, and Brahmans are required 
to sleep on the ground.' Some pious men sleej) 
on the bare ground during the Chdturmds (the 
four months of the rainy season), at the expiry 
of which they present a bed to a Brahman." 
It is enjoined upon a prince to sleep on the 
bare ground on the eve of the coronation 

Widows and women are required to sleep 
on the ground during their monthly courses. 
Women whose husbands are away are also to 
do the same.® In the Ratnagiri District 
Katkaris^ on the day on which they wish to 
be possessed by a particular deity or spirit, 
are required to sleep on the earth. " When 
people are on the point of death, they are 
made to lie on blades of darbha grass placed 
on tlie earth.^* The performer of a sacrifice 
as well as one who has observed a vow 
are to sleep on the ground. ^^ The following 
articles should not be allowed to touch the 

1 School Master, Nevare, Ratnagiri. 

2 School Master, Adivare, Ratnagiri. 

5 School Master, Devarukh, Ratnagiri. 

' School Master, Ratnagiri. 

9 School Master, Chiplun, Ratnagiri. 
^1 School Master, Masure, Ratnagiri. 
M School Master, Khetwadi, A. V, S., Bombay. 
" School Master, Rai, Thana. 
17 School Master, Bhuvan, Thana. 

earth, viz ; pearls, the Shaligram stone, an image 
of the god Vishnu, the linga of Shiva, 
a conchshell, the sacred thread of a Brahman, 
flowers intended for worship, basil leaves, and 
Govardan. ^2 

The following lines are repeated in the 
morning before setting foot to the ground '^^: — 

O Goddess! who is clothed (surrounded) 
by the sea, whose breasts are mountains, 
and who is the wife of Vishnu, I bow down 
to thee ; please forgive the touch of my feet. 
O Goddess Earth! who art born by the power 
of Vishnu, whose surface is of the colour 
of a conch shell and who art the store house 
of innumerable jewels, I bow down to thee. 

Some women of the Tluina District worship 
the earth daily during the Chdturmds (four 
months of the rainy season), at the end of 
wliich they give a Brahman a piece of land or 
the money equivalent of it^*. Persons who per- 
form a particular rite, e. g,, the Soldsomavdr- 
vrata (a vow observed on sixteen succes- 
sive Mondays) are required to sleep on the bare 
ground. 1^ At the sowing and harvest time, 
farmers appease the earth by offering it cocoa- 
nuts, fowls, rice mixed with curd, etc.^*^ The 
blood of a king and the balls of rice given to 
the manes of the dead are not allowed to 
touch the ground. People convey to a distant 
place the water of the Ganges, without placing 
it on the ground. ^^ 

The earth is required to be worshipped 
before taking a portion of it for sacrificial 
purposes. 1'* A vessel containing water over 
which incantations have been repeated is not 
allowed to touch the ground.i^ On the 15th 
day of the bright half of Ashinn every farmer 
prepares some sweetmeats in his house, and 
takes them to his farm. There he gathers five 

2 School Master, Kasba, Sangameshwar, Ratn%iri. 

4 School Master, Pendhur, Ratnagiri. 

6 School Master, Malgund, Ratnagiri. 

8 School Master, Vijayadurg, Ratnagiri. 

ID School Master, Kankava, Ratnagiri. 

12 School Master, Chiplun. Ratni5giri, 

» School Master, Anjur, Thana. 

M School Master, Shahapur, Thana, 

>8 School Master, Chauk, KoWba. 

19 School Master, Vavanje, KoMba, 



stones, worshii>s tliem, and offers the sweet- 
meals to the earth. Afterwards he takes 
a portion of the food and scatters it over the 
farm. His family then gallier there and take 
a hearty meal. In the evening the person 
who carried the food to the farm, picks up 
some grains of barley and puts them into a 
basket. On return home the grains are thrown 
over the house.^ 

Various conflicting notions are entertained 
regarding thunder and lightning. The people 
of the Ratnagiri District believe that the 
clouds are animals that roar. When these ani- 
mals emit water it bursts forth on account of 
the circular motion of the winds called Chanda 
and Munda, This bursting is supposed to 
produce thunder and lightning.- Somewhere 
thunder and lightning are said to be the 
signals given by the godlndra, to birds, beasts, 
etc., of the setting in of the rainy season,'' 
Some people believe that the gcd Indra sends 
rain through his elephants who, being excited, 
make a noise like thunder.'' 

Others regard the thunder as the roiring of 
the elephant of the gods, while sucking sea- 
water. The thunder is also believed to be the 
roaring of the god Varuna, the king of tlie 
clouds.' The boys of the Ratnagiri District 
believe that thunder is a sign of tlie wedding 
ceremonies performed in the heavenly houses 
of the gods." Some Mahomedans believe that 
an angel called M'ekail has control over the rain. 
:To cause a fall of rain Mekail strikes the clouds 
svith a whip of lightning. The clouds then 
utter a cry, and this is the cause of thunder. '^ 
Some people of the Thana District believe 
that there are big stones in the sky whicli 
strike against each other owing to the force of 

the wind, and produce thunder. The dnsh- 
ing of these stones against each other also 
generates lightning.* 

In the Kolaba District it is believed that 
thunder is tlie military band of the king of 
clouds and lightning is his banner. '•* Lightning 
is said to be produced by the fighting of celes- 
tial elephants ; while tluuider is heard when 
they pour out watcr.^" Some people think that 
thunder is the noise of the feet of the elephants 
(clouds) that give rain ; lightning is also said 
to be generated from their foot fall.n The 
clouds are supposed to be the messengers of 
gods, lightning being the manifestation of 
Divine power. The gods are said to confine 
these messengers from the nakshaira of Ardra 
to the nahshatra of Hasti, in which latter 
naJcsliatra the}' again begin to roar.^- 

Thunder is supposed to take place when the 
god Indra draws his bow ; while lightning is 
said to be produced when the same god strikes 
his adamant against a mountain.!^ 

In the Ratnagiri District it is believed that 
earthquake occurs whenever the thousand 
headed Shesha shakes its head.^^ It is said that 
at one lime a demon named Gayasiir became 
very troublesome, and all the gods held him 
down by standing on his body. Thereupon the 
demon requested all the gods to remain on his 
body for ever. Occasionally this Gayasur 
shakes his body and this causes the earth- 
quake.^'^ Some people believe that the earth 
trembles of its own accord when sins accumul- 
ate upon it.i" Others hold that the earth- 
quake takes place in the hollow parts of the 
earth.^^ Some people, however, believe that 
since the earth floats ui3on water, it naturally 
quakes at times. ^* 

1 School Master, Akol, Koluba. 
S School Master, Kasba, Sangameshwar, Raln'igiri. 
s School Master. Masure, Ratn'igiri., 
' School Master, ChipUm, RatnAgiri. 
' School Master, Varsai, Kolaba. 
u School Master, 'Varsai, KoUba. 
13 School Master, Chauk, KoWba. 
15 School Master, Palspot, RatriiSgirl. 
''! School Master, Murb/id, Thuna. 

2 School Master, Pendur, Ratnagiri. 

4 School Master, Makhanele, Ratnagiri. 

c School Master, Basani, Ratnagiri. 

8 School Master, Anjur, Thana. 
10 School Master, Chaul, KoMba. 
1- School Master, Poliidpur, Kolaba. 
n School Master, Chiplun, Ratnagiri. 
ii' School Master, Pendur, Ratnagiri. 
»' School Master, Bhuvan, Thana. 



The Hindus being element worsliippers na- 
turally hold in reverence certain rivers, ponds, 
etc. In the Ratnagiri District the spring at 
Rajapur, called the Rdjdpurchi Ganga is con- 
sidered very sacred. It flows from the roots of 
a Banyan tree. There are fifteen Kundas or 
ponds, and the principal Kitnda always remains 
filled with water. On occasions a big jdtra 
fair is held and people from distant places 
come to batlie and worship at the spring.^ 
Some people believe tliat many of the lakes, 
springs, etc., situated in the Kolhapur State are 
sacred.- A spring or rivulet that flows to the 
east is considered specially sacred. It is called 
a Sarya-Fansi spring, and it is considered meri- 
torious to bathe in it.^ In the village of Kun- 
kauli in the Ratnagiri District if a person is 
bitten by a snake or other poisonous reptile, no 
medicine is administered to him, but holj- water 
brought from the temple of the village goddess 
is given to him to drink, and it is said that the 
patient is thus cured.* The water fall at Maral 
near Devarkuha, where the river Ban takes its 
rise, is held sacred."' At Shivam in the Ratna- 
giri District the people use the tirtha of a 
deity as medicine for diseases due to poison. 
They say that it is the sole remedy they apply 
in such cases. "^ There are ponds at Manora in 
the Goa State, and Vetore in the Savantwadi 
State, the water of whicli is used as medicine 
for the cure of parsons suffering from the poi- 
son of snakes, mice, spiders, and scorpions." 
When a well is dug, the people call a Brahman 
priest to consecrate it. The Braiiman takes 
cow's urine, milk, curds, ghi, sandle paste, 
flowers, basil leaves, and rice, and mixes 

them with water, and after repeating sacred 
mantras over the water, throws the mixture 
into the well. After this ceremony, the people 
are at liberty to drink water from the well.* 

Before a well is dug, an expert is 
consulted to ascertain the place where a 
spring flows. A well is then dug, after 
offering a sacrifice to the spirits and deities 
that happen to dwell at tliat spot. A 
dinner is given to Brahmans after the well is 
built.'* A golden cow is often thrown into a 
newly built well as an offering to the water 
deities. 1^ There is a well at Mandangad, the 
water of wliich serves as medicine to cure 
the poison of snakes and other reptiles. ^^ 

It is believed that there is a class of wicked 
water nymphs calltd Asara who generally 
dwell in wells, ponds, or rivers, far from the 
habitation of men. Whenever these nymphs 
come across a lonely man or woman entering a 
well, pond, etc., they carry that person under 
water. The village of Mith-Bav in the Rat- 
nagiri District is a well-known resort of these 
Asaras, and many instances are given by the 
villagers of persons being drowned and carried 
off in the river by these wicked nymphs. A 
lank in the village of Hindalem in the same 
district has a similar reputation. 12 The people 
of the Konkan believe that water nymphs are 
sometimes seen in the form of women near 
wells, rivers, and ponds. ^^ Some say that the 
water nymphs and water spirits confer objects 
desired by worshippers if they are propitiated 
by prayers.^* 

There are seven kundas^ ponds, at Nirmal in 
the Thana District, forming a large lake. This 

' School 
' School 
5 School 
' School 
9 School 
" School 
■3 School 

Master, Ratnagiri. 
Master, Waahavli, Ratnagiri. 
Master, Makhaaele, Ratnagiri. 
Master, Ubhaddnda, Ratnagiri. 
Master, Basani, Ratnagiri. 
Master, Basani, Ratnigiri. 
Master, Malgund, Ratadgiri. 

« School Master, Phonde. Ratnagiri. 

* School Master, Bandivade, Budruk, Ratnagiri. 

9 School Master. Masure, Ratnagiri. 

8 School Master, Mith-Bav. Ratna<;iri. 
'0 School Master, Masure, Ratnaj-'iri. 
»» School Master, Mith-Bav, Ratnagiri. 
»» School Master, Devarukh, Ratnigiri. 



lake is said to have been formed from the 
blood of the demon Vimalasur. At Shahapur 
there is a holy spring of hot water under a 
Pipal tree. It is called Ganga.^ There are 
kundas, pools, of hot water in llie Vaitarna 
river in the Thana District, in which people 
bathe on the 13th day of the dark half of 
Chaitra.^ There are also springs of hot water 
on the bank of tlie Surya river at Vajre- 
shvari and at Koknere, in tlie Thana District.^ 
A handful of corn, if thrown into the hot 
water kundas at Tungar, is said to be boiled 
at once.* It is held holy to bathe in the 
kundas^ of hot water that are situated in the 
rivers T:insa and Banganga in the Thana Dis- 
trict.'^ The water of a well which is drawn 
without touching the earth or without being 
placed upon the ground is given as medicine 
for indigestion. Similarly the water of seven 
tanks, or at least of one pond, in which lotuses 
grow is said to check the virulence of measles, 
small-pox, etc." A bath in a certain tank in 
the Mahim ialuka is said to cure persons 
suffering from the itch, and water purified by 
repeating incantations over it is also said to be 
a good remedy for the same disease.^ 

The water of a tank or a well is supposed 
to be wholesome to a person of indifferent 
health, if given to him to drink without pla- 
cing it upon the ground.* Some people be- 
lieve that the water oif the Ganges is so holy 
and powerful that if bows are thrown into it 
they are instantly reduced to powder. 9 The 
repair of lakes, caravansaries, temples, etc., is 
held more meritorious than their actual erec- 
tion.'-* It is enjoined upon a man to perform 
a certain rite if he wishes to relinquish his 
light of ownersliip over a well or tank, and 
after this rite is performed, it can be utiliz- 

ed for public purposes. But no ceremony is 
required to be performed if a well is dug for 
the benefit of the public.^^ 

The peo'ple of the Tiiana District believe 
that water nymphs reside in every reservoir 
of Water. 12 Some people, however, believe 
that the water nymphs dwell in those lakes in 
which lotuses grow. These nymphs are said 
to do harm to children and young women, 
especially when they set out for a walk 
accompanied by their brother Gavala. They 
are unusually dangerous. i-' The people wor- 
ship the images of the following seven water 
nymphs or apsaras^ viz., Machhi, Kurmi, 
Karkati, Darduri, Jatupi, Somapa and 

The following places are said to be inhabited 
by water spirits : — the channel of Kalamba, 
the tanks of Sopara and Utnratal and the lake 
called Tambra-tirtha at Bassein i"'. Water 
nymphs are supposed to drown a person who 
tries to save another fallen into water. i'' A 
species of small men named Uda, otherwise 
called water-spirits, are said to dwell in water 
and subsist on fishes. i" The spirits called 
Khais and Mhashya are supposed to reside in 

The river Savitri in the Kolaba District 
takes its rise near Mahabaleshwar and is con- 
sidered very sacred. The following tradition- 
ary account is given of its origin. The god 
Brahma had two wives, Savitri and Gayatri. A 
dispute having arisen between them, the}' both 
jumped over a precipice. S;»vitri assumed 
the form of a river and fell into the sea 
near Bankol. Gayatri, on the other hand, 
concealed herself in the river Savitri and 
manifested herself as a spring near Hari- 
hareshwar in the Janjira State.^" A man is 

1 School Masters, Agdshi and Arndla, Thaoa. 

3 School Master, M^Wd, Thdna. 

5 School Master, W<ida, Thdna. 

" Scliool Master, Anjiir, Tl.ilna. 

' School Masters, .Xgiishi and .•\rnula, Thana, 

n School Master, Rdi, Thana. 

^ School Masters, Agdshi and Arnsila, Thdna. 

15 School Masters, Agdshi and Arndla, Thdna, 

" School Masters, Wida, Thdna. 

W School Master, Polddpur, Koldba. 

2 School Master, Murbud. Thana. 

* School Master, Anjur, Thdna. 

s School Masters, Agdshi and Arndla, Thdna. 

^ School Master, Saloli, Thdna. 
1" School Ma.sler, Kiiiliavali, Tl liiin. 
12 School Master, Khativali, Thdna. 
1* School Master, Murbdd, Thdna. 
16 School Master, Bhuvan, Thdna. 
18 School Master. Shdhdpur, Tbdna, 



said to be released from re-birlh if he takes a 
bath in the kund (pond) named Katkale-tirtha 
near Nasik.^ Bows are said to be reduced 
to powder if thrown into a certain kund at 
Uddhar-Riimeshwar in the Sudhagad taluka.^ 
Kupotsargii is defined to be the digging of a 
well for the benefit of the public and abandon- 
ing one's right of ownership over it.^ 

A pond near Khopoli in the Kolaba district 
is held very sacred. The following story is 
related in connection with it. The villagers 
say that the water nymphs in the pond used 
to provide pots for marriage festivities if a 
written application were made to them a day 
previous to the wedding. The pots were, 
however, required to be returned within a 
limited time. But one man having failed to 
comply with this condition, they have ceased 
to lend pots. Another interesting story is 
associated with the same pond. It is as 
follows, A man had fallen into the pond and 
was taken to the abode of the nymphs. He 
was, however, returned by them after a few 
days on the understanding that he would be 
recalled if he spoke of what he had seen there. 
One day he communicated to the people the 
good things that he enjoyed there, and to the 
surprise of all he was found dead immediately 
after.^ Water nymphs are said to reside in 
a pond at Varsai in the Kolaba district. Con- 
sequently persons that are held unclean, e.g,^ 
women in their monthly course, etc., are not 
allowed to touch it. The nymphs of the same 
lake were once said to lend pots on festive 
occasions,^ It is said that the water nymphs 
used to provide ornaments for marriage and 
other ceremonies, if returned within a pres- 
cribed period. But some people having failed 
to return them, they ceased to lend them,^' 

A spirit called Girha is supposed to reside 
in water. It is said to make mischief with 
man in a variety of ways by enticing him into 
deep water.T The Jakrin is said to be a deity 
residing in water.s Persons drowned in water 
are believed to become water-spirits, and to 
trouble innocent passers-by.* 

A mountain near the village Pule, in the 
district of Ratnagiri is held sacred on account 
of the residence of the gcd Ganpati at that 
place. For this reason people walk round 
the mountain and worship it. Tradition says 
that Ganpati was at first at Gule in the 
Ratnagiri district, but on account of the sanc- 
tity of the place being violated by some 
wicked persons the gcd transferred his resi- 
dence to Pule. At Gule there is still a very 
beautiful temple of Ganpati, though it is 
now in a dilapidated condition.^ The cave 
of the sage Much-kund near Machal on the 
Sahyadri mountain is considered sacred. In 
the Konkan it is not held sinful to ascend a 
mountain or a hill, though to sit upon its 
summit is considered sinful.^i The hiU of 
Mirya near Ratnagiri is considered sacred. 
This hill is believed to be a particle (miri) of 
the mythological mountain Dronagiri.i2 

A hill near Dharavi in the Thana District 
is consecrated by the temple of a goddess 
upon the top. This goddess is said to preserve 
ships at sea, and people are occasionally pos- 
sessed by her. It is said that a Roman Ca- 
tholic priest met instantaneous death on 
having insulted her.^^ 

The hill of Mahalakshmi in the Dahana 
taluka is held sacred. The villagers consi- 
der it dangerous to ascend this hill.^-* On the 
hill of the same name is a temple of the 
goddess Jivadhani, who is said to preserve 
children from small-pox. The following 

1 School Master, Chauk, Kolaba. 
' School Master, Varsai, Kolaba. 
5 School Master, Wavasi, Kolaba. 
^ School Master, Chaul, Kolaba. 
' School Master, Vavasi, Kolaba. 
11 School Master, Bandivade, Budruk, Ratnagiri, 
13 School Masters, Agashi and Arnala, Thana. 

2 School Master, Wavasi, Kolaba. 

* School Master, Khopoli, Kolaba, 

^ School Master, Chauk, Kolaba. 

5 School Master, Akol, Kolaba. 
1" School Master, Basani, Ratndgiri. 
1- School Master, Mdlgund, Ratndgiri. 
'* School Master, Dahanu, ThiSna. 



story is told in connectiou with the goddess. 
A person in need of money used to place be- 
fore her image as large a heap of flowers as 
he wanted gold, stating that he would return 
the gold when he had done witii it. Reused 
then to go home and return on an appointed 
day for the gold, which was sure to be found 
where he had placed the heap of flowers. 
Once a man failed to return the gold, and 
thenceforth the goddess withheld her bounty. 
There is no door to the temple of this god- 
dess. It is only through a hole in a big 
stone that one can have a view of her image. 
Sweet scent is said to be continually emitted 
from this hole. The goddess is said to have 
fastened the door of her temple for the fol- 
lowing reason. One day the goddess was 
walking at the foot of the hill at night. A 
cowherd who happened to be there was be- 
witched by her matchless beauty and fell a 
prey to evil desire. He pursued her to the 
top of the hill, when the goddess, divining 
his motive, fastened the door of her temple 
with a prodigious stone. On the same hQl is 
a cattle shed in which fresh cow-dung is said 
to be always found. This place being inac- 
cessible to cows and other quadrupeds, the 
people believe that the goddess keeps a cow 
of her own.i 

The hill of Tungar is consecrated by the 
temple of a certain goddess upon it. There 
is also a very famous hill near Arnala, called 
the hill of Buddha. This hill was once the 
seat of a king belonging to the weaver caste. 
Recently a pond was discovered upon it, in 
which was found a stone-box containing a 
begging-pot and a diamond. A great fair is 
held annually on the hill of Motmavali near 
Bandra in the Thana district. The devotees 
of the deity are Hindus, Parsis, and Chris- 
tians. It is said this goddess was once wor- 
shipped by Hindus only. A Brahman is the 

pujdri of the Pir on the hill of Baba Malang 
near Kalyan. It is said that the Pir has 
declared that no Moslem pujdri should wor- 
ship liiin. The Hindus and Moslems worship 
him alike. - 

Brahmans do not cross the top of a moun- 
tain witliout stopping for a short time before 
ascending the summit.* 

At a short distance from Cliaul in the 
Kolaba District is a hill dedicated to the 
god Dattatraya, in whose honour a great fair 
is held annuilly. The following story is told 
in connection with this hill. In ancient times 
a Brahman used to practise austerities on this 
hill near a Tulsi plant (the place on which the 
present temple stands). He used to spend the 
whole day there, but returned home at night- 
fall. On his way home fearful scenes were 
often presented to him, and in his dreams he 
was asked not to go there any more. But the 
Brahman was obdurate. He persisted in his 
resolution to jiractise austerities for a number 
of j'cars, and at last succeeded in obtaining 
a personal interview with the god Dattatraya, 
who commanded him to boW' down to his feet 
(pdduka). From that time pious men live on 
this hill and offer their prayers to the god 
Dattatraya. Nearly four hundred steps have 
been constructed for the ascent of this hill, 
and additional steps are being built every 
year. Here also are some s])rings of pure 
water. It is worth while to note that the 
pujdri of this god is a Shudra by caste.* On 
the north-east side of the hill dedicated to the 
god Dattatraya stands the temple of the god- 
dess Hinglaj. To the north of this temple 
are four caves, while to the west is a deep den 
resembling a well, through which a lane ap- 
pears to have been dug. This is said to be the 
road excavated by the Pandavas to enable 
them to go to Kasi.^ At a distance of 

1 School Masters, Agiishi and Arndia, Thilna. * School Masters, Agilshi and Arnala, Thana. 

' School Master, Umbargaum, Thiina. ' School Master, Chaul, Kolaba. 

* School Master, Chaul, KoWba. 



two miles from Akola in the Kolaba Dis- 
trict is a hill called !Mallikarjun. This 
is said to be a small stone fallen from 
the mythological mountain Dronagiri. This 
hill is said to contain many medical herbs. ^ 
The hill at Kankeshwar near Alibag is held 
sacred, and tradition says that in ancient times 
it had golden dust upon it.^ A cave at Ambivali 
near Karjat in the Kolaba district consists of 
seven rooms, one of which is spacious enough 
to accommodite five hundred persons. In the 
same taluka there is another cave at Kondha- 

The gods Indra and Varuna are supposed to 
send rain; but it is believed that the god Shiva 
in chief has the power of causing the fall of 
rain, and for this reason whenever there is a 
scarcit}' of rain people pour water over the 
linga of Shiva until the whole Unga is sub- 
merged.* In order that there shouJd be a fall 
of rain, some people besmear the linga of the 
god Shiva with cooked rice and curds.^ In the 
Ratnagiri District, whenever there is a scarcity 
of rain, people go to the place known as Para- 
shuram Kshetra, and there pray to the god 
Parashuram to send rain.*^ Sacrifices are also 
offered to Indra, the god of rain, in order that 
there should be plenty of rain. Some believe 
that there are certain maniris or enchanters 
■who by the power of their mantras are able to 
prevent the fall of rain.'' 

In the Ratnagiri District the following cere- 
mony is performed by the lower castes such as 
Kunbis, etc., to avert drought. All the male 
villagers assemble together at an appointed 
place, and there they select one of them as 
their Gorvala-deva. All of them then go about 

in the village from house to house. The owner 
of every house sprinkles water over the assem- 
bly, and curds and butter-milk over the body of 
the Gowala-deva. They are also given some 
shidha consisting of rice, pulse, vegetables, 
etc. After visiting most of the houses in the 
village, the assembly headt.d by the Gowala- 
deva go to the bank of a river. Here they 
cook tile food, offer it first to the Gowala-deva 
and then partake of the remainder as a prasdd 
from the Gowala-deva.^ Some people make an 
image of the sage Shringarishi for the purpose 
of causing the fall of rain." Others make an 
image of Dhondal-deva in order that there 
should be plenty of rain.i" Sometimes people 
repeat mantras addressed to Parjanya (rain)' 
so that rain should fall.ii The goddess Nava- 
chandika is worshipped in order that there 
should be rain. The Kunbis perform a pecu- 
liar rite for checking the fall of rain. They 
ask a person born in the months of Jyestha, 
Ashddh^ Shrdvan or Bhddrapad to fetch some 
rain-water in an alu leaf, and this is fastened 
to the eaves of thatched houses by means of a 
string. Note that, if this rite is to be perform- 
ed in the month of Jyestha, a person born in 
that month onl_y is required and no other ; and 
so forth.i- In order to check an excessive fall 
of rain the villagers sometimes ask a boy to 
take off his clothes and then to catch rain- 
water in the leaves of the alu plant. The 
leaves containing the water are then tied to the 
eaves of the house.^* The people say that 
during the rule of the Peshwas there was a 
class of mantris who had the power of causing 
a failure of rain.^* To check the fall of rain, 
some people ask naked boys to throw burning 

1 School Master, Akol, Kolaba. 

' School Master, Chauk, Kolaba. 

5 School Master, Maivan, Ratnagiri. 

' School Master, Kankavli, Ratnagiri. 

' School Master, Chiplun, Ratnagiri. 
1^ School Master, Ratnagiri. 
1* School Master, Bandevade, Budruk, Ratnagiri. 

2 School Master, Sasavane, Kolaba. 
* School Master, Mith Bav, Ratnagiri. 
^ School Master, Anjarle, Ratnagiri. 
' School Master, Phonde, Ratnagiri. 
'0 School Master, Nevare, Ratnagiri. 
12 School Master, Ubhadanda, Ratnagiri. 
1* School Master, Maivan, Ratnagiri. 



coals into the rain w.itt-r.^ Irah (,i protection 
a"-,iinst r.iin made of the leaves of trees) is 
kept in the rain u)iside djwn, tlie goddess Ho- 
lika is worshipped, the boughs of the Avali tree 
are conve.yed to a place where four roads meet 
and stones are lieapcd over it, and eaves of 
th-jtched houses are beaten by boys who da not 
wear clothes, all these being done by tlie vill i- 
gers with a view to preventing an excessive 
fall of rain.2 

The people of the Thana DislrieL believe 
that distinct deities preside over distinctscasons, 
e.g., Mars presides over the spring (Vasuil), 
Venus over summer (Grishma), the moon over 
autumn (Varslia), Mercury over sharat, Saturn 
over winter (Hemant and Shishir).-' When 
the people are in need of rain they say to the 
god of rain "Let us have plenty of rain to- 
morrow and we will give thee, Oh ! God of 
rain! rice mixed with curd." The same offer is 
made to the god of rain even when they do 
not want it. In order that there sliould be no 
scarcity of rain, some people perforin the 
riles of Laghu-rudra and Mah.d-rudra.* The 
following measure if adapted is said to cause 
rain. The villagers go from house to house 
with boughs of the Liinh tree on their heads, 
and water is then poured upon them by the 
inmates.'^ The fall of rain is supposed to 
cease if a person born in the month of Fdlgun 
extinguishes burning coals in rainwater when 
his garments have been removed, "^ 

Some stones are supposed to have influenee 
over rain fall. There is a big stone at Varasai 
in the Kolabi District on which are drawn 
certain images. The people believe that it 
rains hard if this stone is lield straight, and 

then swung to and fro.^ Scn.o people per- 
form the following rile known as the Dhondil- 
jagya. They ask a person of the Kaikadi or 
Vad ir caste to remain naked and break the 
string round his waist. A small image of 
black earth is mads and placed upon his 
Iiead. The boy then conveys the image from 
liouse to house in the village, A woman in 
each house sprinkles water over the image 
while the boy dances saying " Bhondil gaji/a, 
Pdus gajya.'^ It is believed that it rains in 
the direction in which the water sprinkled 
falls. A person who nccoaipanies the boy 
gathers corn at every houss. A dinner is then 
prepared, and the people of the caste to which 
the boy belongs, partake of it heartily. It is 
also said that making water in a standing pos- 
ture causes the fall of rain.** The god Ra- 
meshwar at Chaul in the Koldba District is 
said to have control over r lin. In the temple 
of this god there is a parjanya-knnd (pand) 
which is opened after performing a sacred 
rite, if there be a scarcity of riin. There are 
also otlier kundas in the temple, viz., J'di/u- 
liund and Agni-kund, but no occasion lias yet 
arisen to open them." Some people believe 
that the god Agni regulates the seasons^'\ 
Eaves of thatched houses are cleansed with 
a brusli m idc from the leaves of cocoanut 
trees in order that a fall of rain should be 

Tlie ceremonies of Haritalika, Eislii-Pan- 
chami, Vata-Savitri, Von:i-Shasthi, Mangala- 
Gouri, Shital-Saptami are to be perforoK d by 
women alone. ^- Similarly, the ceremonies of 
Mahalakshmi, Vasubaras, Shiva-mutha, and a 
rite on the M ikar Sankrant day are pcrl'orioed 
by women exclusively.^ ' 

I School Master, Diibhol, Ratniigiri. 

3 School Masters, Agiishi and Arnula, Tlulna. 
5 School Master, Dahiinu, Thilna. 
7 School Master, Nagothana, Koldba. 
9 School Master, Chaul, Ko'iiba. 

II School Master, KUetwadi, A.V.S., Bombay. 

- School Master, Hasani, Ratiiagiri. 
^ School Master, Murbad. Thana. 
' School. Master, Padaghe, Thdna. 
' School Master, Akol, Kolaba. 
'" School Master, Apte, Koldba. 
12 ijchool Master, Mdlvan, Ratniigiri. 

13 Sohoo! MaUer, Mdlgund, Ratndgiri. 



The rite of Rishi-Panckami is performed 
on the 5th diy of the bright-half of Bhddra- 
pad to make amends for sins committed with- 
out knowledge. On this diiy women go to a 
river, a well, or sume other sacred place, 
cleanse their teeth with the leaves of the 
'Agkdda plant, and take baths with something 
on the head. They then take some stones 
from that j)lace and worship them as Rishis_ 
On the conclusion of the worship, they partake 
of fruits. On the VralaSdvitri diy women 
worship a banyan tree or its boughs. The 
ceremony falls on the 15th day of the bright 
half of Ji/esta.^ On the Haritdlika day i.e., 
the 3rd diy of the bright half of Bhddiapdd, 
women make images of earth of Pareati and 
her two friends and worship them and fast 
the whole div. The observance of this rite 
contributes to their good fortune. Even girls 
of tender 3'ears observe this fast- The wor- 
ship of Mangala-Gauri is a ceremony per- 
formed by married girls for five successive 
years on every Tuesday of the month of 
Shrdvan, Similarly, the goddess Mahalakshmi 
is worshipped o'n the 8th diy of the bright 
half of ^*/'fi«. On ihe ^lalcar Sankrdnt day 
women worship a sugad * and present it to a 
Brahman.- The Shiva-mutha consists of a 
handful of corn offered to the god Shiva by 
married girls on every Monday in the month 
of Shrdvan.^ 

The worship of Shadanauda and the Holika 
Devi and the ceremonies of Shrdvani, 
Shrdddha and Antyesti are performed by men 

In some families of non-Brahmans on a 
particular day, especially on the full-moon 

day of Ashvin^ the host and the hostess put off 
their clothes and perform certain family 
rites .5 

The women of the Thana District fast the 
whole day on the 1 2th day of the dark half 
of Ashvin, At night they worship a cow, 
give in charity a calf, and then take their 
meal. It is to be noted that this ceremony 
called the Vasu-dtvddusl is performed by 
women who have children. On the Haritdlika 
day some women live on the leaves of a 
Rui tree.^ 

On the 'Soviavali-Aindvdsija day women wor- 
ship a Pipal tree and olTer it a hundred 
and eight things of one kind.^ Women 
desirous of having a son perform a certain 
rite at midnight, without clothing.^ If one 
wishes to have a son, one has to go through 
a ceremonj' called the Hanumdn in a naked 

The god Kalbhairav is worshipped by a 
naked person on the Narka-Chathurdasi day 
(14th day of the dark half of Ashvin), 
Those learning the dark lore, e. g., muth 
mdrane, are also required to remain naked 
while studying it. They learn this lore on an 
eclipse day on the bank of a river. i" The rite 
called Somaya is performed by the host 
when his clothes are off" his body. On a 
certain Monday in the month of Shrdvan a 
lamp of wheat flour is prepared and burned 
by adding ghi. This lamp is regarded as a 
deity, and is worshipped solemnly. During 
the performance of this ceremony as well 
as the prei^ar ition of the requisite food, the 
host and the hostess are required to remain 
naked. ^^ 

1 School Master, Ubhadinda, Ratndgiri. 

* Two earthen pots tied face to face, one of which containing some corn and red and yellow powders. 

2 School Ma>ter, Basani, Ratnagiri. ^ School Master, Malgund, Ratndgiri. 

4 School Master, Malvan, Ratnagiri. ^ School Master, Makhanele, Ratndgiri. 

6 School Master, Anjur, Thana. ' School Master, Badlapur, Kalyan. 

8 School Master, Bhuvan, Thana. ' School Master. Bhuvan, Thdna. 

10 School Master, Tale, School No. I, Kolaba. " School Master, Poladpur, Kolaba. 



The Swayambhu (uimrtificial) linga of the 
god Shiva is supposed to have influence over 
the fall of rain.i 

The people of tiic Thana District believe 
that the following ceremony causes a fall of 
rain. Stones are taken out of a pool and 
worshipped. They are then carried to every 
house in the village, and water is poured upon 
them by the inmates.^ There is a temple of 
the god of clouds at Viranath in the Thana 

The appearance of a comet is regarded by 
the Hindus as symptomatic of a coming 
evil, e.g,^ a big war, a great famine, or a 
terrible contagious disease spreading itself 
throughout the length and breadth of a coun- 
try. * Some persons think that comets and 
shooting stars bode evil to the king.^ 

Whenever a great person or a very hoi}' 
man is about to be born, it is believed that 

lie alights on the earth in the shape of a 
shooting star. Sometimes a big star falls on 
the earth, and thereby a noise like that of 
thunder is produced. When this Jiappens, 
people believe that a great Raja or a holy 
saint whose merit has been exhausted is going 
to be born on earth." The following verse 
from the Mrichhakatiha Ndtak supports the 
view in accordance with which orthodox 
people in the Konkau avoid looking at 
shooting stars : — 

sn=€r iTroiTfTr% II "rri^^ ^rr^rc II i.e., 

The following four things, t'i-., the rain- 
bow, the fall of shooting stars, the delivery 
of a cow, and the death-struggle of saints or 
holy men should not be looked at.' It is 
generally believed by Hindus that a child 
will immediately be born in the house to- 
wards which shooting stars are directed.* 

1 School Master, Devarukh, Ratnagiri. 

3 School Masters, Agashi and Arnala, Thdna. 

6 School Master, Nivare, Ratnagiri, 

' School Master, Thana, 

2 School Master, Badlapur, Thdna. 
i School Master, Mith Bav, Ratnagiri. 
6 School Master, Mith Bav, Ratnagiri. 
8 School Master, Kolaba. 



In the Konkan the deities of the Hindus 
are divided into the following five classes, 
viz : — 

(1) The Grdmadevatds or Village deities, 

(2) The StKdnadevatds or Local deities, 

(3) The Kuladevaids or Family deities, 

(4) The Ishtadevatds or Chosen deities, and 

(5) The JTdstudevatas or Grih-adevatds^ that 
is, the class of deity which presides over the 
house and is established at the time of the 
housewariuiug or TVdstu ceremony. 

The principal Grdma-devatds are Hanu- 
man or Maruti,, Kalika, Amba,. Waghoba, 
Chedoba, Mhasoba, Bahiroba or Bhairav, 
■Gancsh, Vira, Mlialsa or Malia Lakshmi, 
Chamunda, Vetal, Khandoba Malhari Jogai,, and Wageshwari and Shiva. In 
most villages the chief village god is Maruti 
or Hanuman, whose temple is situated at the 
entrance of the village. Maruti is consider- 
ed to be an avatar or incarnation of Shiva, 
and is held in great reverence by all classes. 
A festival or jatra is held in honour of Ha- 
numan on the bright half of the month of 
Chaitra_ On this occasion the temple is de- 
corated with ever-greens, and flowers, the 
stone image of the god is newly painted or 
covered with red lead and oil, and garlands 
of the Rui (Gigantic snake wort) flowers are 
■placed round the neck of the image, cocoa- 
nuts, plantains, betel-nuts and leaves are 
offered to the god, camphor is lighted and 
■waved round the image, incense is burnt, 
-cooked food and sweets are offered, and money 
presents are made. Every worshipper brings 
with him some oil, red-lead or Cendur, a co- 
coanut, a vidd-supdri^ i.e., two betel leaves, 
one betel-nut and a copper coin, and a gar- 
land of Rui flowers. These are given to the 


temple niinistrant, who offers a part of the 
oil and red lead to the deity, places the gar- 
land round the deity's neck, and, breaking the 
cocoanut into pieces, gives a piece or two to 
the devotee as the prasdd or favoured gift of 
the deity. Saturday is the sacred day of 
the monkey god Maruti. Every Saturday 
fresh oil and red lead are offered to the god 
by the devotees. The Pujdris in most of the 
temples of Maruti are Guravs, Ghadis, Mara- 
thas or Gosavis. 

Every Saturday in the month of Shrdvan 
(August), called the Sampat Shaniwdr or the 
Wealth-giving Satuirdiy a special puja or 
worship is performed in the temples of Ma- 
ruti in Bombay as well as in the Konkan. On 
this day people fast the whole day and dine 
in the evening, after offering the god Hanu- 
man or Maruti a preparation of rice and 
pulse called khichadi and cakes made of udid 
flour called vade.^ 

There is no village in the Konkan which 
has not the honour of having a temple of the 
god Maruti. Maruti is supposed to guard 
the village against evils of all kinds. Care 
is therefore taken to build the temple of Ma- 
ruti at the outskirts of the village.^ There is 
a tradition that at the time of leaving the 
Dandaka forest (the present Maharashtra), 
Rama asked Maruti to reside therein. It is 
for this reason, the people say, that every 
village in the Konkan and on the Ghats has 
a temple of Maruti.* The god Maruti is 
worshipped in the village of Wasind on 
Tuesdays and Saturdays.* In former days 
it was customary to establish an image of the 
god Maruti in a newly built castle or fort.^ 
Hanuman, the son of Anjani and the wind or 
Marut, is known for his loyalty to his master 

I Scliool Master, Khetwadi, Bomba)-, 2 School Master, Devgad, Ratn^giri. 

3 School Master, Kamathipura, Bombay., * School Master, Wasbind, Tbana. 

5 School Master, Umela, Thina. 



and for his bravery. In days gone by he uti- 
lized his strength for the protection of Saints, 
Rishis, Brahmans and cows, and for this 
merit he was elevated to the rank of a Hirdu 
gcd. Every Hindu village or locality is sup- 
posed to possess at least one temple of the gcd 
Maruti, and in Maharashtra Miiruti is the guar- 
dian of every village. He is a Brahmachari^ 
or bachelor and is one of the seven heroes wl o 
are believtd to be chiranjivis or immortals.* 
Maruti is supposed to be the originator of the 
MantraShdsira, by the study and repetition of 
which one obtains strength ard superhuman 
power. Women desirous of getting children 
go to the temple of Maruti, and there burn 
before his image lamps mrde of wheat flour 
and filled with ghi. The image of Hanuman 
is represented in tcnples in two ways, that is 
(l) Vira Hanuman or AVarrior Hanuman, (2) 
Dasa-Hanuman or servant Hanuman. The 
former is fourd in a tenpple consecraltd to 
tie worship of the gcd Hcnuman alone, 
whereas the latter is found in a temple dedi- 
cated to the wcrship of the god Ra'ma.i 
Since Maruti is the gcd of strength, gymnasts 
tie an image of Maruti to their wrists, and 
they alfo consecrate an image of Maruti in 
tteir gymnasiums. The number eleven is 
said to be dear and sacred to him because he 
is believed to be an incarnation of the eleven 
Rudras. The birth day of the god Maruti 
which falls on the 15th of the bright half of 
Cfiaitra, called the Hanuvian Jayanti day, is 
celebrated in the Kolhapur District with 
great reverence. Those who wish to have a 
son draw the figure of Ma'ruti on a wall in 
red-lead, and worship it daily with sandal 
paste, flowers and garlards of Bui. Others 
burn lamps made of wheat flour before the 
image of the god. Persons who are under 
the evil influence of the planets, and especi- 
ally of the planets Saturn, worship the god 
Hanuman on Saturdays in order to propitiate 

the planets. On this day they make wreath» 
of the leaves and flowers of the Rui plant and 
adorn Iiis neck with them. They also offer 
him iidid (Phascolus radiatus) and salt. The 
story told of Maruti is that Anjani his mother 
pleased the god Shiva with her penance, and 
when the god asked her to cliini a boon, she 
requested that Shiva himself sliould be bora 
as her son. Shiva therefore took birth in her 
womb and manifested himself as Hanuman 
or Maruti^. 

The Local deities are generally found in 
special localities or sacred places called Kslie- 
tras oT Puiiya stJidnas, Tims tlie god E ama 
at Nasik, Vithoba at Pandharpur. Krishna at 
Dwarka, Mahalakshmi at Kolwan, Wagre- 
shwari at Nirmal (Tluina), Mharloba in the 
Ratnagiri, Sliitala devi at Kelwa Mahim,. 
and Kliandoba or Khanderai at Jejuri. 

Khandcrai is said to be an incarnation of 
the god Shiva. Khanderai killed the demon 
Mani-Malla who was devastating the earth, 
and he is therefore called Mallari or Malhari. 
Kunbis and lower class Hindus in the il^nkan 
as well as in the Deccan occasionally make a 
vow to the god Khandoba that if their desire 
is fulfilled they will offer their first born 
male or female child to the service of the 
god. The male child thus dedicated to 
Khandoba is called Waghya and the female' is 
called Murali. The Waghya and Mnrali do 
not engage in any business, but maintain 
themselves by begging in the streets in the 
name of the god Khanderai. Though they are 
not actually married, the Waghyas and 
Muralis live as husband and wife, and their 
progeny are also called Wi'ighyas and Muralis. 
They repeat the sacrtd cry jai hhanderdydcha 
Elkot^ and give to people bel.bJianddr 
of Khanderai consisting of the sacred 
Bel leaves and turmeric powder. The god 
Khanderai is the family deity of some De- 
shasth Brahmans, who perform a family rite 

* The Hindus believe lliat there are seven heroes 
3 Vyiisa, 4 Hanumdn, 5 Bibhishana, 6 Krif dduirya 

1 School Masters, Agashi and Arnala, Thiina. 

who can never die, i.e., 1 Ashwatthdma, 2 Bali, 
and 7 Parashuram. The Sanskrit text is: — 

2 School Master, Samangad, Kolhdpur, 



called Tali bharane rfzt T^ on every 
purnima or full moon diy. The rite is as 
follows :— 

A tali or plate is filled with cocoaimts, fruits, 
betel nuts, saft'ron, turmeric or belhhanddr, etc. 
Then a pot is filled with water, and on its 
mouth a cocoanut is placed. This cocoanut, 
with llie pot, is then worshipped with flowers, 
sandal paste, etc., a lighted lamp filled with 
ghi is put in the same place, and the tali is 
waved thrice round the pot, which is supposed 
to contain the god Khandoba. Five persons 
then lift up tlie cocoanut with the tali and 
Ijlace it three times on the pot, repeating each 
time the words Elkot or Khande rdydcha Elkot, 
The cocoanut is then broken into pieces, mixed 
with sugar or jagri^ and is distributed among 
friends and relations as pra.idd. On this 
•occasion, as well as on the occasions of all 
Kuladharmas, that is, the diys fixed for per- 
forming the special worship of the family 
goddess or family god of eacli family, the 
ceremony called the Gondhal d mee is 
performed. On the same occasion another cere- 
mony called Bodan is performed by the Desha- 
sths and by the Chitpavans. It is as follows: — 
An image of the family deity is placed in a 
pot or plate called tdmlian, and it is then bathed 
in the panchdmrit, that is, the five holy things, 
vis., milk, curds, ghi, honey and sugar. Sandil- 
paste is offered to it as well as flowers, lighted 
lamps and some sweets and incense. Five 
women whose husbands are alive then prepare 
five lamps of wheat flour called Kuranandi 
and wave them thrice round the face of the 
goddess or god, as the case may be. All the 
lamps are then pi iced in the plate or tdmhan 
in which the deity is kept, and the panchdmrita 
and other materials of worship and food and 
sweet cakes are mixed together. Occasionally 
one of the five women becomes possessed with 
the spirit of the kula-devi at family deity, and 

confers blessings on the members of the family 
for their devotion. It is believed that those 
families which fail to perform periodically the 
Bodan^ Tali and Gondhal ceremonies in 
honour of their tutelary deitj' are sure to suffer, 
from some misfortune or calamity during the 
year.i The local deities chiefly worshipped 
at Cliaul, Kolaba District, are Hinglaj, Jakh- 
mata, Bhagawati, Champawati, Mahikawati, 
and Golamba-devi. At the sowing and reaping 
times, people of the lower castes offer fowls and 
goats to these deities, and Brahmans offer 
cocoanuts.- The local deity of the village 
Wavashi near Pen in the Kolaba District is 
said to possess the power of averting evil, and 
is accordingly held in great respect by the 
people of many villages in the District. 
Every third year a great fair is held, and a 
buffalo is sacrificed to the goddess on the full 
moon day of the montli of Chaitra. The 
Pujdri of this goddess is a Gurav.^ Another 
celebrated Sthdna-deva in tlie Kolaba District 
is Bahiri-Somijai of Khopoli. It is believed 
that a person suffering from snake-bite is 
cured without any medicine if he simply resides 
for one night in the temple of this goddess. 
Sacrifices of goats, fowls and cocoanuts are 
made to this goddess at the time of sowing and 
reaping. The Pujdris of this deity are known 
as Shingade Guravs.'* The worship of the local 
deity Bapdev is much in favour among the vil- 
lages of Apta and the surrounding places. At 
the times of sowing and reaping, offerings of 
fowls, goats and cocoanuts'are made to Bapdev 
through the Pujdri.^ The worship of the 
local deities Kolambai, Bhawani, and Giroba 
is prevalent in the Chauk villages.* To the 
Grdma-devi of the village of Tale every third 
year a buffalo is sacrificed, and at an interval 
of two years goats are offered.^ The deities 
Shiva and Kalkai are worshipped with great 
reverence at Bakavali in the Ratnagiri District.^ 

1 School Master, Poladpur, Kolaba. 
3 School Master, Wavshi, Koldba. 
5 School Master, Aptaj^ Kolaba ' 
' Schosr Master, Tale, Koldba. 

2 School Master, Chaul, Koldba. 

* Sc'iool Master, Khopoli, Koldba. 
6 School Master, Chauk, Koldba. 

* School Master, Bakavali, Ratnagiri. 



In many villages of the Ratnagiri District 
the goddess Paiidli.-ir is considered to be the 
Gaon-devi or the chief goddess of Ihe 
village. The Ptijdri is generally a Gurav or 
Marathi'i Kunbi. On every full moon day eocoa- 
nuls are offered, and on the occasions of sow- 
ing and reaping, goats and fowls are sacrificed 
to this deity .1 At Devgad there is a temple of 
the goddess Gajabai on the sea shore. The 
Pujdri of this goddess is a man of the Ghadi 
caste. On the first day of the bright half of 
the month of 3/nro-(is/ii;.$/j (December) S])ecial 
offerings of goats, fowls and cocoanuts are 
made by the villagers.- The deities Raval- 
natli, Mauli, Vetal, Rameshwar and Hanuman 
are usually worshipped in most villages in 
Ratnagiri. The villagers in the Ratnagiri 
District have great faith in their local deities, 
and before undertaking any important busi- 
ness they obtain the consent or take the omen 
of the deity. This ceremony is known as 
kaul ghdlne and it is performed as follows : — 
Two betel nuts or flowers are taken and one 
of them is placed on the right side of the 
deity and the other on the left side. The 
worshipper then bows before the deity and 
requests her to let the nut on the right side 
fall first if the deity is pleased to con- 
sent, if not, to let the nut on the left side fall 
first. Naturally one of the two nuts falls 
first, and they interpret this as either 
consent or dissent as the case may be. The 
villagers have so much faith in this kaul that 
they make use of this method of divination to 
ascertain whether sickj or diseased persons 
will recover or die. Special sacrifices are offer- 
ed to these local deities whenever an epide- 
mic like cholera occurs." In the Ratnagiri 
District, at many places, there are Swayambhu 
or natural lingas of the god Shiva, and over 
these places temples are built. The Pujdris 
of these temples are generally Jangams or 

Lingayat Gnravs. No animal sacrifices are 
made at these shrines.^ At a short distance 
from the village of Makhamle there is a tem- 
ple of the god Shiva called Amnayeshwar. 
The following legend is narrated in connection 
with this temple: — The place where the present 
temple stands once abounded with Amani trees 
and formed a pasture for cattle. The cow- of 
a certain man of the village daily used to go 
to graze at this place. The cow used to give 
milk twice, but one day she gave milk onlv 
once, and thereafter she continued to give 
milk only once a day. The owner therefore 
asked the Gavali or cowherd to ascertain the 
cause of this sudden change. One day the 
cowherd noticed that the cow allowed her 
milk to drop upon a stone. At this the cow- 
herd was so enraged that he struck the stone 
with his scythe so hard that it was cloven in 
two and blood gushed forth. He hurriedly 
repaired to the village and related this won- 
derful phenomenon to the people. The villa- 
gers came to the spot, and decided to build a 
temple to the god Shiva over the stone. 
One part of the stone is in this temple and the 
other part was taken to the village of Kalam- 
biiri, where another temj)le was built over it.' 
In the Sangameshwar village the Brahmans 
also worslii)) the images of the local goddesses 
Chandukai, Jholai and Sunkai. In the Kon- 
kan the deities Narayan, Rawalnath, Manli,^ 
Datta, Vetiil and Shiva arc worsJiipptd every 
where.'' The following legend is told about 
the deity Vetal, the leader of the ghosts: — In 
the Sawantwadi State there is a temple of 
Vetal in the village of Ajgaon." As part of 
his worship it is considered necessary to 
offer to this deity a pair of shoes every month. 
The people believe that after a few days 
the shoes become worn out. The inference 
drawn from this by the people is that at 
night the god Vetal goes out walking in 
the new shoes. ^ In the village of Khed 

» School Master, Ratniigiri. 

' School Master, Parule, Ratnagiri, 

' School Master, Malgund, Ratnagiri. 

' School Master, Sangameshwar, Ratnagiri. 

2 School Master, Devgad, Ratodgiri.. 
' School Master, Poladpur, Koldba. 
6 School Master, Makhamle, Ratndgiri. 
8 School Master, Kimathipura, Bombay, 



in the Ratnagiri District, a buffalo is offered 
to the goddess Redjai on the full moon 
day of Chaitra every third year. ^ At Narin- 
gre offerings of cocoanuts, etc. are made to the 
deities Bhavakai, Chala, etc. on the 1st of the 
month of Mdigashirsha. 2 The Schoolmaster 
of Ibrampur states that one of the following 
deities is the giamadevata of every village in 
the Ratnagiri District viz: Chandkai, Varad- 
han, Khem, Bahiri, Kcd;ir, Vaggaya, Antaral, 
Manaya, Salbaya and Vaghambari. A proces- 
sion in their honour takes place in the months 
of Chaitra and Fdlgun. The Pujdris are gener- 
ally either Guravs or Maratha Kunbis. A 
ceremony called Palejaira is performed in the 
sowing season, while the Dhal-jatra is per- 
formed at the harvest time. At these fairs 
fowls, cocoanuts, goats, fruits, etc. are offered 
to these deities.-' At Malwan on the no-moon 
day of Shrdvan (August) local deities and 
ghosts are propitiated by offering to them goats, 
fowls, etc* At Palset in the Ratnagiri 
District, the god Parashuram is the most 
important deity especially for Chitpavans, 
He exterminated the Kshatriyas twenty-one 
times, and Saving no space for himselfi and 
his Brahmans, he asked the sea to provide him 
with new land. On meeting with a refusal, 
Parashuram became enraged and was about to 
push the sea back with his arrow, when, at the 
instigation of the sea, a black-bee (bhunga) 
cut the string of his bow, and the arrow only 
went a short distance. The people say that the 
space thus recovered from the sea came to be 
called Konkan.5 At Anjarlc there arc two local 
goddesses Sawanekauin and Bahiri. Offerings 
of goats and fowls are made to them in the 
months of Mdrgashirsha (December)" and 
Fdlgun (March). Sometimes liquor and eggs 
are also offered. Offerings can be made on any 

day except Monday and Ekddashi, Tuesdays 
and Sundays being considered most suitable." 
At Ubhadanda in the Ratnagiri District, Rav- 
alnath and Bhutanath are held in great revcr- 
ense. They are believed to be incarnations of 
the god Shiva. The Pujdris are generally 
Guravs, Ghadis, Rauls and Sutars,^ The 
following goddesses which are popular in the 
RatnagiriDistrict are believed to be incarnations 
of the goddess Durga, ub. Navala-devi, A''aghur- 
devi, Jakha-devi and Kalkai.s At Maral in 
the Ratnagiri District there is a swayamhhu 
or natural linga of the god Shiva. It is called 
^laheshwar, and in its honour a fair is held 
on the Sankrdnt day,o The chief local deity 
of the Dahanu taluka, Thana District, is Maha- 
lakshmi. She has seven sisSers and one bro- 
ther, two of the sisters being the Pangala-devi 
at Tarapur and the Delavadi-devi at Ghivali. 
Goats and fowls are offered to the Pangala- 
devi on the Dasara day. Her Pujdri is a 
Guirav, It is said that the goddess Delwadi 
used to receive her garments from the sea, but 
now this is no longer the case though it is still 
believed that the incense which is burnt before 
lier comes floating from Dwa'rka.i" In the 
village of Edwan there is a goddess called 
Ashajjuri, who used to supply her devotees with 
whatever tliej- wanted. The devotee was re- 
quired to besmear with cow-dung a plot of 
ground in the temple, and to pray for the things 
wanted by him. The next day, when he came 
to the temple, he found the desired things 
on the spot besmeared with cow-dung.^^ At 
Mangaon the Pujdri of the local goddess is 
either the Patil or the Madhavi of the villajge.^^ 
In the village of Dahigaon cocoanuts are 
offered annually to the village Maruti, and 
fowls and goais to the other local deities, in 
order that the village may be 2Jrotected against 
danger and disease.-'^" It is believed that any 

^ School Master, Dabhol, Ratnagiri. 
' School Master, Ibrampur, Ratnagiri. 
5 School Master, Palset, Ratnagiri. 
' School Master, Ubhadanda. Ratnagiri. 
^ School Master, Sakharpe, Ratnagiri. 
H School Master, Ed^n, Thana. 

'^ School Master, Dahigaon. 

- School Master, Naringre, Ratnagiri. 

* School Master, Malwan, Ratnagiri. 

'' School Master, Anjarle, Ratnagiri. 

^ School Master, Masure, Ratndgiri. 
'" School Master, Dahanu, Thana. 
12 School Master, Mangaon, Thana. 


FOLKLORE OF THE KOyKJX wLo acts as tlic Pujdri of the god 
Shiva will find his family cxlcrininatcd, and for 
this reason Brahmans do not act as Pujdris 
in lh<; temples of Shiva. 

In a few temples of goddesses like Jakhai 
etc. the Pujdri is of the Maluir caste.'^ A 
great fair is lield in lionour of the goddess 
Vajra-bai or Vajrcshwari near Nirmal in the 
monih of K art ik a (November). The Pujdri 
of tlie goddess is a Gosavi of the Giri sect. 
The worship of Bhimascna is not prevalent in 
the Konkan, but the hero Bhima, like Maruti, 
is held in reverence by the gymnasts. Bhima 
is not worshipped, but a work called the 
Bhima-siavardj is read at the bed of a dying 
man in ordt-r that he may obtain salvation. 
At Ashirgad there is a g7imj}7ia or cave of 
Ashwathama, a hero of the Mahabharata, and 
it is said that a noise is heard coming from the 
cave on the full moon day.^ 

Wherever a village is founded, it is custo- 
mary to establish a village deity as the guar- 
dian of the village. The deities chosen are 
M:iruti, Kali, Chandkai, Varadani, etc. In the 
Konkan, goddesses are preferred, and on the 
Ghats generally Maruti is preferred. Certain 
ceremonies are performed for consecrating the 
place to the deity, and sometimes the deity is 
called after tlie village as Marleshwar^ etc. 
Bv many lower class people the goddess Pon- 
dhar is often selected as the guardian of a 
new village. At Shahpur, if the newly found- 
ed village is to be inhabited by high class 
Hindus, the deities Maruti and Durga are 
selected as grdma-devatas, but if it is to be 
inhabited by lower class people, then such 
•deities as Mhasoba, Chedoba, Jakhai, etc. are 
chosen.' In the Bassein and Salsette talukas 
the following deities vis. Maruti, Clieda, 
Chandkai and Shiva, are chosen as village 

deities. Cheda is represented b.v a long piece 
of wood or stone besmeared with red-powder, 
and is placed on the outskirts of the village. 
No Brahman is necessary for establisliing a 
Cheda. The Pujdri is generally a Kunbi or 
Mali, and he establishes the deity by offering 
it a goat or fowls and cocoanuts.' Sometimes 
the guardian deity of a new settlement is 
decided upon by a Eaul. Two or three names 
of deities are selected, betelnuts or flowers 
are placed on the sides of the guardian deity 
of the neighbouring villige and that deity 
in whose name the betelnut falls first is 
chosen as the deity of the new village.'' At 
Chaul, the deity called Bapdev is very popular 
among the lower classes. It is represented by 
a big stone fixed on mortar and besmeared 
with red-powder. M'hen it is established for 
the first time in a village, a Braliman is required 
to make the first pujo or worshij), but after 
this it is worshipped by a Piijdri of a lower 
caste.'' The Maliars in the Kolaba District 
select the ghost-deity called Jhaloba as the 
guardian deity of a new settlement.^ In many 
eases the deity of their former village or of 
the neighbouring village '•' is named by a 
Bhagat or exorcist, who becomes possessed.^" 

In the Konkan every village farm is suppo- 
sed to be under the guardianship of the minor 
godlings, the majority of which are called 
Bhuta-Devatds or ghostly godlings. In some 
cases the field guardians are also the Brahma- 
nic godlings like Maruti and Shiva. To the 
Briihuianic guardians of tlie field, cocoanuts and 
flowers are ofl'ered at the sowing and reaping 
seasons, and to the rest, fowls, cocoanuts, and 
sometimes goats, are offered. Tlie higher clas- 
ses feed one or two Brahmans in order to pro- 
pitiate the deities of the fields ; and for the 
propitiation of the minor deities of the field 

» School Master, Bhiwandi, Th^na. 
3 School Master, Agashi. Thrtna. 
' School Master, Shahdpur, Thdna. 
' School Master, Medhe, Koldba. 
9 School Master, Akol, Kolaba. 

" School Master, SI 

2 School Master, Agashi, Arnuia, Thdna. 
* School Master, Malgund, Ratnagiri. 
C School Master, Agushi, Thiina. 
s School Master, Cliaul, Koliiba. 
10 School Master, Masure, Ratndgiri. 
liroshi, Thiina District. 



the lower classes perform a rite called Dalap. 
This rite is performed by a man of the Gurav, 
Ghadi, or Raul, caste by sacrificing to the field 
deity a goat or fowls and cocoanuts. The 
pujdii repeats prayers for a good harvest, and 
then distributes portions of the offerings among 
the people assembled there for witnessing the 
rite.i In the Ratnagiri District on the no moon 
■dsLy of Jeshta people assemble in the temple of 
the village deity and perform a rite called 
Gdrhdne in order that they should have a good 
crop, that their village may be free from 
diseases, and that their cattle may be protected. 
A similar rite is performed on the first day of 
•the briglit lialf of the Uionth of Mdrgashirsha 
(December), and on this occasion sometimes a 
goat or sheep is sacrificed at the boundary of the 
■village." In order that there should be 
a good harvest, the villagers of Kankaoli 
worship on certain days from the month of 
Kdrlika (November) to the month of Shimga 
■(Marcl\) the min )r deities of the field by 
offering them fowls, cocoanuts, etc.^ At Achare 
(Ratnagiri) some people worship the god of 
the clouds on the day on which the Mrlga- 
sJiirslia constellation begins, and they believe 
that thereby plenty of rain is ensured for the 
season.'* For good harvests and for the 
protection of their cattle, the villagers of 
Achare pray to the Grdma-devata in the 
month of Jeshta (June), and tlien go in pro- 
cession from the temple of the village deity 
to the boundary of the village, where they 
sacrifice a cock and ofl'er some cooked rice 
with a burning wick upon it, to the deity 
that presides over the fields and harvests.''' 
In the village of Palset of the Ratnagiri 
District the goddess Khema is worshipped by 
the villagers to obtain good crops, and for 
the protection of their cattle. The Piija or 

special worship takes place on the full-moon 
day of Mdrgashirsha and on this occasion the 
sacred Gondhal dance is also performed.® 
In certain villages of the Ratnagiri District, for 
obtaining good harvest, people worship tlie 
godling Mahapurusli at the beginning of the 
sowing and reaping operations, and offer the 
deity fowls, cocoanuts and cooked riee.^ In 
the village of Alalwan, at the sowing and 
reaping seasons, tlie villagers usually make 
offerings of fowls and cocoanuts and goats to 
the guardians of the fields, but Brahmans 
and such Kunbi farmers as do not eat flesh 
make offerings of cooked rice mixed with 
curds.^ At Ubhadanda village, in order 
to secure a good harvest and for the protection 
of tlie cattle, the villagers worship the spirit 
godlings called ^Sambaiiclhas and ])erform the 
rite called Devachdr.^ At Kochare, annual 
prayers are offered to the godling called Gavat- 
dcv for the protection of the village cattle.^** 
In the Devgad taluka people believe that some 
deity resides in every farm or in every collec- 
tion of fields, and that good or bad harvests are 
caused as the deity is pleased or displeased. ^1 
In order that there should be plenty of rain 
and that the cattle should be ])rotectrd, the vil- 
agers of Malgund assemble in the temple of 
the village deity and offer prayers on the full 
moon day of Fdlgun (March) and on the 1st 
day of the bright half of Mdrgashirsh}" In 
the Kolaba District, for the protection of cattle 
and for good crops, prayers are oflered to the 
god Bahiri and tile ghosts Khavis and Sam- 

At Chauk in the Kolaba District the vil- 
lagers perform a special pdja or worship of 
the god Krishna in order that the village 
cattle may be protected.i"* At Casawani a 
fair called pdle jafra is held in the month of 

1 School Master, Parule, Ratnagiri. 
3 School Master, Kankaoli, Ratnagiri. 
5 School Master, Masure, Ratnagiri. 
' School Master, Basani, Ratnagiri. 
9 School Master, Ubhadanda, Ratndgiri. 
11 School Master, Devgad, Ratnagiri. 
13 School Master, Khopoli, Kolaba. 

- School Master, Adivare, Ratnagiri. 

* School Master, Achare, Ratnagiri. 

'' School Master, Palset, Ratndgiri. 

^ School Master, Malwan, Ratnagiri. 
1" School Master, Kochare, Ratnagiri. 
12 School Master, Malgund, Ratnagiri. 
1* School Master, Chauk, Kolaba. 



Bhddrapad (September) in order that the vill- 
agers may have a good liarvest, and that their 
cattlr may bi- proticttd against tigers and 
disiasf.*- At Akol. on tlic d.iy which follows 
the Gaiiexh-Chtiliiiilii. pto))lf throw parchtd 
rice ovi-r Ihrir firhls .md houses so tha' Iht- 
rats may not run over them.- At in 
the Tli.ina District, for the protection of cattle, 
the god \\ agiioba is worsliippcd at night on 
the 12th of Ashwin which is called the JVdgh- 
bdrasj' In some villages of the Thana 
District tile deity Waghoba or Waglij-a is 
worshipped on the 12lli day of the dark half 
of Kartik\ On tiiat da^' the cowherds collect 
a quantity of milk and prepare a kind of food 
known as Khir by mixing ja^/j and cooked 
rice. They then proceed to the stone image 
of the deity in the jungle, and besmear it with 
new red-lead or shendur. They pour a portion 
of the sweet milk over the stone, and offer 
prayers for the protection of their cattle. 
They then partake of the remaining milk.^ 
At Agashi and other neighbouring villages, 
before the fields are ploughed, the vil- 
lagers assemble and collect a certain 
sum of money, with whieli they buy 
goats, fowls, red-powder, cocoanuts and par- 
ched grain. A goat and some cocks are then 
sacrificed to the spirits residing in the ceme- 
teries and at the boundirv of the village. 
Cocoanuts besmeared with guldl red powder 
arc also offered to tliese ghost eodlings. A 

goat decorated with garlands and red powder 
is then made to walk round the village three 
linus at night, accompanied by the villagersr 
who tlirow lahjia parelud rice while passing, 
Tliis rite is calitd Siira litnuUianc or bind- 
ing tlie boundary, and is supposed to protect 
the village crops and c.ittle. No fanner dares 
to sow his seed unless this rite has been per- 
formed. After this rite has been performed, 
every farmer appeases his family deity i.e. 
Khandoba, Bahiroba, Kankoba, etc., by per- 
forming a eerciaony at home called Deopan 
or Deva'aki^ which relates to the worship of 
ancestors. Most of the farn.ers regard one of 
their dead ancestors as their chief deity, and 
represent him in their house by a cocoanut. 
They do not enter on any new business with- 
out first ofl'ering prayers to this cocoanut, and 
they also believe that they can bring e\il upon 
their enemies by simply cursing ihem before 
the deified cocoanut. The only materials 
generally required for tlii' worsliip of this 
cocoanut are red powder, incense and flowers. 
On rare occasions, goats and fowls are sacri- 
ficed. It is believed that tlie anetslor in the 
cocoanut likes to be worsiiipptd by the wife or 
husband (as the case may be) of the person- 
represented by the cocoanut. Some farmers, 
in addition to the cocoanut, worsliip a stick or 
cap of their ancestor along with the cocoanut, 
and offer prayers for the i>rolection of their 
cattle, for good rain and harvest, and also for 
the destruction of their enemies." 

• School Master, Sasawani, KoUba. ^ School Master, Akol, Kohiba. 

* School Master, Miiliid, Thana. * School Master, Bhuwan, Thrina. 

5 School Master, Agashi, Thana District. 



A T Vengurla, in the Ratnagiri District, when 
epidemic diseases prevail, the people of 
the village assemble and prepare a basket in 
which are placed cooked rice, cocoanuts, lemons, 
wine, red flowers and Udid (Phaseolus radia- 
tus) grain. The basket is then carried t ut of 
the village along with a cock or a goat, and 
deposited outside the village boumdary. To 
carry this basket, a person belonging to the 
Mahar caste is generally selected. The people 
of the next village similarly carry the basket 
beyond their village limits ; and it is finally 
thrown into the sea. It is believed that if the 
basket of offerings to the disease-deities is car- 
ried from one village to another, it is sure to 
bring the disease with it. Great care is there- 
fore taken to throw the offerings into the sea. 
In cases of small pox a feast is given to women 
whose husbands are alive. In some cases 
boiled rice is mixed with the blood of a cock, 
and on the rice is placed a burning black cot- 
ton wick in a cocoanut shell with a little oil in 
it. The whole is then carried beyond the 
village boundary and thrown away.-*- In the 
Tillage of Mitbav in the Ratnagiri District, 
epidemic diseases like cholera, small pox, 
plague, etc., are supposed to come from 
disease deities, and in order to avoid the dan- 
ger of such diseases the people of the village 
go to the temple of the village deity and pray 
for protection. The special form of worship 
on such occasions is the Kaiil i.e., asking a 
favour from the deity. When an epidemic of 
plague broke out for the first time at Sang- 
meshwar, the people of the village at once pro- 

ceeded to worship the village deity ; but a few 
cases of plague occurred, even after worshipp- 
ing the village goddess Jdkhmafa. When the 
people went to the temple and asked the reason 
why the plague continued, it was announced by 
the deity through the temple ministrant that 
she was helpless in the case of plague, and 
desired the people to worship (lie god Shiva, 
thereby signifying that the village deity has 
limited powers, and that the power of averting 
great evils lies with Shiva the god of destruc- 
tion.2 In the Devgad Taluka of the Ratnagiri 
District in epidemic diseases like cholera, etc., 
the usual ceremony, i.e., the Paradi (disease- 
scaring basket) is performed. A basket 
containing boikd rice, red powder, red 
flowers, lemons, betel nuts, betel leaves, etc., 
is prepared, and on that rice is kept 
a burning cotton wick dipped in oil. The 
basket is then carried beyond the village 
boundary along with a goat liaving a red 
flower garland round its neck. The goat 
is set free at the outskirts of the village. 
In cases of small pox, married women whose 
husbands are alive are worshipped with 
turmeric powder, cocoanuts, flowers, etc., and 
incense is kept burning in the house. The 
deity of small pox is also specially worshipped 
for a number of days. It is represented by a 
brass or copper lota with a cocoanut placed 
over it. This process is called mdnd bharane 
i.e. arranging the materials of worship. The 
girls in the house sing songs in praise of the 
small pox deity. It is believed that in this way 
the severity of the disease is reduced.* 

1 School Master, Ubhdddnda, Ratadgiri. 2 School Master, Mitbav, Ratndgiri. 

' School Master, Fonda, Ratndgiri. 



In the Sangameshwar taluka of the Ratna- 
giri District, when epidemic diseases prevail, the 
people of the village assemble in the temple 
of tlie village deity, offer a cocoanut to the 
goddess, and ask for a Kaul (omen). After 
receiving the Kaul they pray for mercy. It is 
believed that if the Kaul is in favour of the 
people the diseases will disappear.^ At 
Achare in the Malwan taluka of the Ratnagiri 
District it is believed that epidemic diseases 
such as cholera, small pox, etc., are caused by 
the anger of the deities Jari and Mari ; and in 
order to satisfy those deities animal sacrifices 
are oft'cred at the time of their worship. There 
are no other deities who cause such diseases. - 
At Vijayadurg in the Ratnagiri District, in 
cases of small pox, the child suffering from the 
disease is made to sleep on a silk garment 
Sovalen. Flowers are thrown upon the 
patient's body, and are given to him to smell. 
Incense is burnt in the house. On the 
seventh day from the beginning of the disease, 
the child is first bathed in milk and then in 
water. Black scented powder called Ahir is 
thrown on the body. After two or three days 
an image representing the deity is made of 
flour, which is worshipped, and a feast is given 
to Brahmans and unwidowed women.'' 

At Basani in the Ratnagiri District the 
disease of small pox is averted by a Brahman 
worshipping tlie goddess Shilala. Brahmans 
are also worshipped, and a feast is given to 
them. In cases of cholera and the other epide- 
mic diseases the village deity is worshipped 
and sacrifices are made to her.* 

At Kochare in the Vengurla taluka of the 
Ratnagiri District, a woman whose husband is 
alive is made to represent the goddess Jari 
Mari. and is worshipped with flowers, red pow- 
der Kunku and black ointment Kdjal. She is 

given a feast of sweet things ; and rice and 

cocoanuts are put into her lap by another wo- 
man whose husband is alive. She is then 
carried in procession through the village with 
beating of drums and the singing of songs. 
This is similar to the Paradi procession, which 
is also common in that District.'' 

At Navare in the Ratnagiri District, in 
cases of small pox, the diseased child and the 
person into wliose body the small pox deities 
called Bay as enter, are worshipped with Abir 
black scented powder, flower garlands, Sec* 

At Pendur in the Malwan taluika of the 
Ratnagiri District the wrath of the female 
deities or Mdtrikds is supposed to be the cause 
of epidemic diseases, and these Mairikds are 
accordingly worshipped for their pacification.^ 

At Chaul in the Kolaba District the god 
Shankar is worshipped by Brahmans when epi- 
demic diseases prevail in a village. The wor- 
ship consists in repeating Vedic hymns. The 
nine planets are also propitiated by sacrifices of 
boiled rice, etc. There is a famous temple of 
the goddess Shitala at Chaul where the deity 
is worshipped by Brahmans, who recite Vedic 
hymns, whenever small pox prevails in the 
village. The mantras of the goddess and the 
Shitala Ashtaka are also repeated in the 
Paurdnic style. The women walk round the 
temple every day as long as the signs of the 
disease are visible on their children. The 
goddess is worshipped with turmeric and red 
powders, and clothes and fruits are given to 
her. The Kaul ceremony is also practised in 
this District. It is worth noticing that even 
Musalmans ask for a Kaul from this goddess. 
The days fixed for Kaul are : — Sunday, 
Tuesday, Thursday and Friday. The morning 
hours are considered specially auspicious 

* School Master, Sangmeshwar, Ratnagiri. " School Master, Achare, Ratnrigiri, 

' School Master, Vijaydurg, Ratniigiri. * School Master, Basani, Ratnagiri. 

' School Master, Kochare, Ratnagiri. ^ School Master, Navare, Ratndgiri. 

' School Master, Pendur, Ratn^iri. 



for the Kaul. There is another temple at 
Chaul, of the goddess Shri Golaba Devi. 
This goddess is also worshipped when other 
epidemic diseases prevail in the village. 
Saptdha i.e. continuous worship for seven days 
is also perfornicd in honour of the deity. Tlie 
gardeners {Mdlis) of the village worship this 
deity every Tuesday morning with cocoanuls 
gathered from every house in the village. This 
temple is being repaired at present.^ 

When epidemic diseases prevail in the village 
of Poladpnr of the Kolaba District the god 
Shiva is worshipped by continuously pouring 
water over the deity's head or linga. Sacrifices 
of fruits and animals are also offered to the 
village deity. Where there is a temple of 
the deity Mari or Mahamari, tlie deity is 
worshipped through a Brahman, and sacrifices 
of cocks and goats are offered to her. The 
deity named Shitala is worshipped in cases 
of small pox. 2 

At Vavashi in the Pen taluka of the Kolaba 
District, in cases of epidemic diseases, the 
people of the village invoke the god Shiva, and 
holy fires called homa are kindled in honour of 
that god. Sacrifices of boiled rice are also 
offered to tlie deity. For averting small pox 
the deity Shitala is invoked by the mantras 
called Shitala Astaka. For averting fevers the 
gods Shankar and Vishnu are also worshipped.^ 
At Medhe in the Rohe taluka of the Kolaba 
District the god Shiva is worshipped in 
order to avert an epidemic, and Hauumaii is 
worshipped to avert fevers.* 

At Malad in the Salsette taluka of the 
Thaua District, when an epidemic prevails in a 
village, the goddess Navachandi is worshipped 
and the Homa is kindled in her honour. On 
the last day of worship a goat is set free as a 

sacrifice to the deity. The Bali i. e., the offer- 
ing of boiled rice, and the goat are taken 
beyond the boundary of the village, and 
handed over to the people of the neighbouring 
village, wlio follow the same procedure, and at 
last both the sacrifices are thrown into the sea. 
Tlie goat generally dies, as it does not get 
water and food till it reaches the sea.'' 

In the village of Anjur in the Thana Dis- 
trict, in cases of long standing fevers the 
Brahmans observe the ceremony called Udah 
Shanti or propitiation by water. It is as 
follows : — An earthen pot filkd with water 
is placed on the ground. On the top of the 
pot is placed a round plate in which the image 
of the god Brahmadev the son of Vishnu is 
consecrated. Four Bralimans sit on the four 
sides of the pot and repeat their Vedic hymns. 
These four Brahmans are supposed to be the 
fouar mouths of the god Brahmadev. It is 
believed by the people that by performing this 
ceremony the fever is made to disappear.^ 

At Riii in the Thana District some people 
believe that malarial fevers are averted by 
placing secretly a small stone on the head of the 
god Hanuman.'^ 

In the Kolhapur District Ihe nine planets are 
worshipped in the house to ward off diseases 
such as cholera, small pox, fevers, etc. The 
goddess Laxmi is worshipped in order to avert 
small pox, the worship being generally per- 
formed in a garden or a grove of mango trees, 
when parched rice, cocoanuts and lemons are 
offered to her. The people assembled at tlie 
spot partake of the food. To avert fever, the 
people perform a certain ceremony ordained 
in the Shdslras, If the sick person is suppo- 
sed to be under the evil influence of the planet 
Saturn, the planet is invoked by repeating the 

1 School Master, Chaul, KoUba. 
s School Master, Vdvashi. Koldba. 
5 School Master, Mdldd, Thana. 

2 School Master, Poladpur, KoUbai 
* School Master, Medhe, Koliba. 
6 School Master, Anjur, Thdna. 
School Master, Rai, Thana. 



mantras^ and worsliippcd with the usual offer- 
ings. Garments sucii as a ^dri and a Chuli are 
offered to tlie goddesses Mari and K.-ilubai. 
Wlien an epidemic disease such as cholera 
prevails in a village, tlie people of the village 
instal the deity Margai at a place where four 
roads meet, and worship her for seven or eight 
days with mucli ceremony. Every one brings 
offerings of cocoanuts, lemons, anibil or conjee, 
cooked rice and curds, etc. with the beating 
of drums to offer to the deity. After worshipp- 
ing the goddess in this manner for tight 
successive days they sacrifice a Bali of a 
he-buffalo before her. The deity is then put 
upon a bullock carl and carried through 
the village with the beating of drums and mucli 
ceremony, to be thrown away beyond the 
village boundary along with the offerings.'- 

Epidemic diseases are not attributed to 
witchcraft at Devgad in the Ratnagiri Dis- 
trict. It is believed that they are cause 1 by 
tlie accumulated sins of the people.- In the 
Dapoli taluka of the Ratnagiri District 
epidemic diseases are attributed to witchcraft 
by low caste people. The power of averting 
such diseases lies in the hands of the village 
deities. They are therefore propitiated by 
the sacrifices of cocks, goats, and cocoanuts.* 
At Poladpur in the Kolaba District, epidemic 
diseases are sometimes attributed to witchcraft 
by low caste people. Persons well versed in 
the mantras of evil spirits are called Bhagats 
or exorcists. Some of them keep evil spirits at 
their command. The poor people believe that 
what these exorcists foretell is sure to occur. 
It is believed that the spirit dwells on the 
tongue of these exorcists. When these spirits 
are hungry, they are let loose in the village by 
the sorcerers for the destruction of the people, 
thus causing an epidemic. When a sj)irit is to 

be destroyed, tlie people of the village 
assemble in a mob and attack the sorcerer, a 
small quantity of blood is taken from his 
tongue and water from the earthen pot of a 
Chambhar is poured upon it. It is believed 
that by so doing the spirit is permanently 
destroyed and the sorcerer either forgets all 
his mantras or they become ineffective. The 
spirit is called fond bhiit, and it sometimes 
troubles even animals.'* 

At Chauk in the Karjat taluka of the 
Kolaba District, the people believe that the 
devotees of the Mari deity bring on epidemic 
diseases by the use of their mantras, and in 
order to satisfy them, offerings are made 
to the deit}' Mari which are taken by the 
devotees or Bhagats.^ At Vade in the Thana 
District epidemic diseases are attributed to' 
witchcraft. There are some women who are 
supposed to bring on, or at least foster, the 
growth of such diseases by their evil mantras. 
Such women are threatened or punished by 
the people, and sometimes they are even driven 
out of the village.'' In the village of Anjur 
of the Thana District, if a man vomits blood 
accidenlly and falls ill, or dies, it is believed 
to be due to the act of Miith Marane, 
that is, the throwing of a handful of rice over 
which incantations have been repealed. If 
there be any sorcerer in the village who has 
learnt the same incantations, he alone is able 
to return the Mutk to the sorcerer who first 
used it." At Shirgaum in the Umberg^aon 
taluka of the Thana District, when epidemic 
diseases prevail in the village, the people of the 
village take a turn round the village in a 
body and kill a buffalo. A Bali or offering 
of boiled rice, cocoanuts, cocks and goats is 
also offered to the deities that cause epidemic 

1 Rao Saheb Sheike, Kolhapiir. 
' School Master, Anjarle, Ratnagiri, 
5 Sctiool Master, Chauk, Koliiba. 
' School Master, Anjur, Tluina. 

* School Master, Mitbav, Ratndgiri, 

' School Master, Poladpur, Koldba. 

6 School Master, Vade, Th^na. 

' School Master, Umbergaos, Thana. 



When cattle disease breaks out in a village 
the people of tlie De\agad taluka in the 
Ratnagiri District generally prevent the 
healthy cattle from mixing with the diseased, 
and the people of the neighbouring villages 
take precautions against using the milk, 
etc. of the diseased cattle. At such times 
the cattle of the village in which the disease 
breaks out arc prohibited from entering the 
neighbouring villages.^ At Ubhadanda in the 
Ratnagiri District, the deity named Malia Gira 
is worshipped in connection with cattle 
diseases. At some places a feast is given to 
Brahmans, and in certain villages of this 
District a man is painted like a tiger, carried 
out of the village and bathed in a ri»er. It is 
believed that this is one of the remedies for 
averting cattle diseases.' At Fonda in the 
Ratnagiri District, when cattle disease breaks 
ut, a goat or a cock is sacrificed at the temples 
of the village deity.' In some villages of the 
Miilw.ui taluka the deity Brahman is 
worshipped.^ At Basani in the Ratnagiri 
District the gods of the Mahars as also the 
village deity are worshipped in connection 
with the cattle diseases.-* At \'avashi in the 
Kolaba District when cattle disease prevails 
in a village, a pig is killed and buried on 
the border of the village. A sweet oil lamp 
in the sliell of a crab or a lobster is kej)! 
burning in the cowshed. River or sweet 
water fishes are boiled in water, and the water 
is given to the animals to drink. The owner 
alsj cleans the cowshed and burns sulpher 
camphor, dauimer and other disinfectants.'^ 
At \'arsai in the Pen taluka of the Kolaba 
District a Kaiil is taken from the village deity 
to prevent cattle diseases, that is, the village 
deity is consulted through the temple ministrant, 
who acts as the spokesman of the oracle.' At 
Medhe in the Rohe taluka of the Kolaba Dis- 
trict the village deitj' Bahiroba is worshipped 

in connection with cattle diseases. The dis- 
eased animals are minutelj' examined, and the 
affected part of tlieir body is branded with a 
red hot iron.^ In the village of Umela of the 
Thana District the village deity is worshipped 
and sacrifices are offered to her. Milk from 
the affected villages is prohibited, and veget- 
ables are not fried in oil during the prevalence 
of the disease in the village. ** At Kolhapur 
the people make vows to the god, and aslies 
from the temples are brought and applied to 
the forehead of tlie cattle. Cotton strings are 
tied to the feet or the neck of the cattle in the 
name of the god. They also make vows to the 
deities Tamj ai and Waghj ai, and offer to them 
e3'cs made of silver, a new cloth, a fowl or 
a goat, when their animals are cured of the 

In the Devgad taluka of the Ratnagiri Dis- 
trict, in cases of malarial fevers pieces of 
certain kinds of herbs are fastened together 
with black cotton strings, and tied round the 
arm or neck of the person suffering from the 
disease. Sacred ashes are put in a copper 
amulet and the amulet is tied in the manner 
above described.!^ At Fonda in the Ratnagiri 
District, in addition to herbs and copper aum- 
lels, peacock feathers in black cotton strings 
are tied to the arms of the persons suffering 
from malarial fevers, etc.^- At \^engurla in the 
Ratnagiri District, in fevers like malaria, 
black strings of cotton are tied round the arm 
or neck, and certain secret mantras arc repeated 
at the time. It is believed that the power of 
the mantras is lost if they are disclosed to the 
public. i'^ At Murud in the Dapoli taluka of the 
Ratnagiri District the mantras of the god 
Narsinh, the fourth incarnation of Vishnu, are 
repeated for the exorcism of diseases. i* In the 
Dapoli taluka people who want to get rid of 
their diseases tie a copper amulet to their arms. 
The mantras that are repeated on such occa- 
sions are kept secret. There are at present 

1 Sctiool Master, Mitbav, Ratnagiri. 
' School Master, Fonda, Ratnagiri. 
5 School Master, Basani, Ratnagiri, 
' School Master, Varsai, Kolaba. 
9 School Master, Umela, Thana. 
n School Master, Mitbav, Ratnagiri. 
IS School Master, Ubhadanda, Ratnagiri. 

2 School Master, Ubhddanda, Ratnagiri. 
i School Master, Bandivade, Ratnagiri. 
G School Master, Vavashi, Kolaba. 
8 School Master, Medhe, Kolaba 
W Rao Saheb Shelke, Kolhapur. 
1- School Master, Fonda, Ratnagiri. 
14 School Master, Murud, Ratnagiri. 


soiue persons in the Anj.irlc village who give 
such amulets and cli.iriiis.i In the Chiplun 
taluka of the Ratnagiri District the following 
articles are used for averting diseases: — Copper 
anmlels, black cotton strings, and holv water 
over wliicli certain mantras Iiave been repeated 
by the ixoreist.^ At Pohdpur in the Kolaba 
District, black cotton strings are tied round 
the ami in cases of malarial fevers. Some 
mantras are repeated in cases of pain in the 
right or left side of the bod,v. Besides the 
mantras some signs and figures are drawn on 
birch leaves, and tied round the arm or the 
neck of the ji.iticnt. ^A'omeii who wish to have 
children wear such black cotton strings and 
copper amulets.* At Vavashi in the Kolaba 
District tnantras are in vogue for the exorcism 
of diseases such as liver and spleen affections 
For exorcising eye diseases black cotton thread 
is lied to the ear.'' At Chauk in the Karjat 
taluka of the Kolaba District, ashes are applied 
to the body of tlie sick person after repeating 
certain mantras over tlieni/' At Malad in the 
Thana District, for exorcising diseases caused 
by evil spirits, certain letters of the Nrisinha 
viantra are written on a birch leaf, and the 
leaf is tied round tlie arm of the sick man with 
a copper amulet. In order to drive out the 
evil spirit permanently, the god Nrisinlia is 
worshipped, and sacred fire is kindled to pro- 
pitiate the deity. For tlic worship of Xrisiiiha 
the required must be a regular 
devotee of Nrisiiiha, and lie must also be 
a Panchdkshari i.e. one who knows the 
mantras of evil spirits.'' In the village 
of Shirgaon in the M.-lliiin taluka of the 
Thani District, in addition to copjier amulets 
and black threads of cotton, mantras (,f 
Musilnian saints or pirs .are in vogue for 
exorcising disease." At Kolhajiur, the higher 
classes perform the religious ceremony called 
Anushthdn to propitiate Sliiva, the god 
of destruction, in order to] avert disease, 

and also make vows to the same deity. The 
lower classes offer coco.inuts, fowls or a "oat. 
They sometimes go to tJie exorcist for ashes 
in the name of the god, and .ipjjly them to 
the forehead of the diseased person. Copper 
amulets and cotton strings given by the cvorcist 
are also tied round tlie neck of the sick )>erson s 
At Adivarc in the R.atn.igiri District the 
following practices are adopted for driving out 
evil spirits that cause disease. Incense is 
burnt before the exorcist, drums are beaten 
.and tin 11 the exorcist takes a burnin"' wick in 
his hand and frightens the diseased person by 
striking tlie ground with a cane or .a broom of 
peacock feathers. He also cries out loudly 
He then out the evil sjiirit from the body 
of the diseased person, and jnils it in ,i bottle 
which is either carried out of the villao-e and 
buried under ground near a big tree or is 
thrown into the sea." In the i^angameshwar 
taluka of the Ratnagiri District, the process of 
exorcising is sometimes accoiupaiiii d by danc- 
ing and loud cries, The person who suffers 
from evil spirits is taken to Narsoba's Wddi in 
the Kolhapur State where patients are believed 
to find a cure.^'^ In the Devgad taluka of the 
Ratnagiri District the exorcist, when jJossessed 
does not dance as at other places, but freely 
uses abusive epithets to drive out tlic evil 
spirits; and on such occasions the threats are 
rei^ealed loudly by the exorcist. ^^ In the 
D.ipoli taluka of the Ratnagiri District, danc- 
ing is used ill exorcism. While dancing; the 
exorcist makes a show of different kinds of tits. 
They are to those made by a person 
suffering from hysteria. He also stands and 
sways his body to and fro for some time, then 
assumes a serene and quiet attitude, and begins 
to cry out loudly.^- There are some sorcerers at 
Di'isgion in the Kolaba 13istriet, who dance and 
cry out loudly in order to drive out the evil 
spirits from the body of the diseased. ^^ At 
Malad in the Thana District dancing is used 

1 Scbool Master, Anjaric, Ratnagiri. 
3 Scliool Master, Poladpur, Kolaba. 
5 Scliool Master, Chauk, Kolaba. 
" Scliool M.aster, Shirgaon, Tliiina. 
• School Master, .Adivare, Ratnagiri 
'^ n School Master, Fonde, Ratnayir' 

2 School Master. Tbhrampur, Ratnagiri, 
4 School Master, Vavashi, Kolaba. 
6 School Master, Miilad, Th;ina. 

8 Riio Siiheb, Shelke, Kolh.ipur. 

ID School blaster, Sangnieslnvar, Ratnagiri. 

1« School Master, .\njarle, Ratnagiri. 

'3 Schoolmaster, Ddsgaon, Kolaba. 


in exorcism. The following is a description of 
one of thess dinces. Songs of the deity which 
is to be suaimoned on tlie occasion are smig 
along with the music of the Tdl (a kind of 
cymbal) and the beating of druiis called 
Ghuma' ^ The Ghiimat is an earthen jar, the 
lower and upper ends of which are covered 
over with lentlier. The mm in whose body 
the deity is to unke its appear.ince takes his 
bath and sits by the side of a small prayer 
carpet called Asan_ A small quintity of rice 
(about a ser) is put in front of the carpet, and 
a copper pot filled with water is pliced on the 
rice. The musicians begin to strike their 
instrument with a loud clash, and the exorcist's 
body begins to shike. The shaking of the 
body is a sure indication of his being spirit- 
possessed. He then sits upon the carpet and 
begins to throw grains of rice into the coppe 
pot containing water, gives out tlie name 
of the pirtieulsr spirit with which he is 
possessed, and the ciuse for which it has 
attacked the patient. He then explains 
the measures and rites by whicli the .spirit can 
be dri\'en out. Tiie peuple abide by Iiis direct- 
ions, and the patient is thus cured.^ 

At Padghe in the Thana District, when an 
,ev'il spirit is to be driven out from the body of 
the patient, the latter is asked to liold in liis 
mouth a beleliiut or a lemon. After some 
time, the betelnut or the lemon is put into a 
bottle, the bottle is then tightly corked and 
buried uaderground. A copper pot is filled 
with water, and the diseased person is asked to 
Iiold the pot upside down. If the water runs 
out it is believed that the spirit has dis- 
appeared, - 

In the village of Ed.van of the Thana Dist- 
rict, dancing is prictised in cases of spirit 
possession, but it is resorted to among the lower 
castes only. While dincing, the sorcerer cries 
out loudly, and throws grains of Udid (Phasee 
olus radiatus)on the body of the diseased person'' 
after repeating certain mantras, Tliis rit 
is styled Bkdrani or the process of charming. 

At Kolhapur, dancing is not used in exorcism, 
but the people suffering from evil spirits some- 
times dance and cry out loudly. Some of 
them loose their hair while dancing, and even 
strike their heads. Some quarrel like comba- 
tants, and some of them try to make speeclies 
like orators. There is a temple of the god 
Shri Dutta at Narsinhwadi in the Kolhapur 
State, to which people suffering from evil spirits 
are brouglit for a cure. These people cry out 
loudly when tlie palanquin of the Srvdvii Maha- 
raj is carried through the village, and spirits 
usuiUy quit the bodies of their victims at tJiis 
ime, for it is said that they cannot bear the 
proximity of the ■Swdini Mahdrdj, Patients 
arc also cured by residing in the village for a 
certain period. On tliis account the village of 
Xarsobiiciiiwadi is considered very lioly. A 
big festival is celebrated in this village annu- 
ally on tile twelfth day of the dark half of 
Ash'win (October). Feasts are given to the 
Brahiuans, the expenses being borne by tiie 
Kolhapur State.'* 

In the Sangameshwar taluka of the Ratnagiri 
District, tlie Bliagat or exorcist is respected by 
the lower caste people. His duties are to ask 
a liaiil from the deity on behalf of the people 
and to alleviate their sufferings. His appoint- 
ment is hereditary, the clever member of the 
family generally following the profession of 
his father. 5 In the Devgad taluka of the 
Ratnagiri District, low class people are afraid 
of sorcerers because they might injure them if 
they are offended. They therefore arc care- 
ful not to cause them displeasure. There, the 
profession of a sorcerer or exorcist is nat 
hereditary. Any one wlio learns the wicked 
mantras after attending regularly the burial 
and burning grounds for some days becomes 
an expert, and may follow the profession.'' 
In the Malwan taluka of the Ratnagiri Dis'.rict 
the chief function of the villige sorcerer is to 
worship the village deity. All kinds of gifts 
and presents intended for the deit}' are made 
through him. His profession is hereditary 

1 School Master, MdUd, Thana. 

5 School Master, Edwan, Thana. 

5 School Master, Sangameshwar, Ratnagiri. 

2 School Master, Tadghe, Thana. 
* Rao Saheb Sheike, Kolhapur. 
« School Master, Mitbav, Ratnagi 



and he is much respected by the ignorant 
people^. At Fonda in tlie Ralnugiri District 
tiie exorcist is not appointed, but one who can 
satisfactorily intcrprtt or explain to the village 
deity the suH'erings of tlie people is generally 
selected. 2 

In the Vengiirla taluka of tiie RatniigiriDis- 
trict, the chief function of the vilhige sorcerer 
is to find remedies for tiie cure of persons 
suffering from evil spirits. His position among 
the people of the low classes is considered 
high. He follows the hereditary profession of 
a sorcerer, and generally the eldest son suc- 
ceeds his father." 

At Chidhran in the Panwel taluka of the 
Kolciba District, Bhutes, a caste of beggars, 
are the devotees of a goddess. Some of them 
are called BJiagats. Devrishis are very rare. 
The difference between a Devrishi andaBhagat 
is as follows: — \ Devrishi removes the evil 
spirits bj- simph repeating the mantras while 
the Bhagat removes them by bringing the evil 
spirit into his own body and by dancing, etc.* 

At Chaul in the Kolaba District, Bhutes go 
begging in the n orning ev( ry day for the first 
nine days of the month of Ashtvin (October). 
On the tenth day the Bhutya is given a pice 
from every house. These Bhutes are devotees 
of the goddess Shakti. At Sasawane in the 
Kolaba District the villag-e sorcerer comes to 
beg every day and is given rice, etc., but 
during the first nine days of the bright half of 
Ashrcin (October) he is given copper coins. ^ 
At Anjur in the Thana District the devotee of 
a particular god is called Bhagat^ and one who 
knows how to sunmion or eject evil spirits is 
called Bhutya. A Devrishi is a person who 
knows the '""«/'■«■« for warding off the great 
evil spirits such as Brahma Rdkshasa^ Brahma 
Samhand, etc. Tliese three classes are res- 

pected only for performing their respective 
duties, and not otherwise." 

At Kolhapur, the sorcerer is never appointed. 
His functions are to ask a kaul from the deit_v, 
to pray for the welfare of the people^ and 
explain to them what he sees in his dreams. 
He holds no position in higher societj", but the 
poor people who believe in liiin are afraid of 
him. Sorcerers are generally very cunning;, 
they frighten (loor people, and obtain from 
tiieni ]jresents and gifts for their maintenance.'' 

Ill the \'engurla taluka of the Ratnagri 
District r( d flags are hoisted on Banyan, Pipal^ 
and Umbar trees, and on certain occasions 
offerings of coins and cocoanuts are made. It 
is believed that when the three kinds of trees 
happen to grow together, ;.c., close to each 
oilier, near a well or on the bank of a river, 
the god Datta resides there, hut such c.>se& 
are very rare. These trees are supposid to be 
the haunts of the Munja spirit, and therefore 
copper coins waved round the persons suffer- 
ing from evil spirits are thrown underneath 
them. There are no sacred wells in this 
taluka. s In the Dapoli taluka of the Ratnagiri 
District, the Banyan and Pipal trees arc 
worshipjicd. The forn;cr is worshipped by 
women on the full moon day of the month of 
Jestha (June) and o«i the no moon day when 
it falls on Monday. On these occasions a cotton 
thread is tied round the tree, and offerings of 
glass beads, cocoanuts, fruits, etc., are made. 
These trees are also worshipind with offerings 
of copper coins, etc." In the Dapoli taluka, 
there is a certain place between tlie two villa- 
ges of Anjarla and Harnai where persons pas- 
sing: bv Ih.-it side throw one or two stones, 
causing thereby a heap of stones there. It is be- 
lieved that by doing this the person who throws 
such stones gets rid of his itch. This place 

1 School Master, Bandiwade, Ratnagiri. 
3 School Master, Ubhiklilnda, Ratriiigiri. 
^ School Master, Sasawane^ Kolaba. 
' Ri'io Siiheb Shelke, Kollulpur. 

' School Master, Bankavli, Ratnagiri. 

- School Master, Fonda, Ratnat-iri. 
* School Master, Chidran, Kolilba- 
c School Master, Anjur, Thana. 
8 School Master, Ubhiidiinda, Ratndgiri. 



is called Girjoba. Hands and feet made of 
wood are also offered b\- persons wlio make 
vows to do sa when their hands or legs are 
affected by any disease. ^ At Ibhrampur in 
the Ratnagiri District offerings of cotton 
thread, copper coins, and fruit are made to 
Banyan and Pipal trees on the full moon day 
of the month of Jesiha (June) and on every 
Saturday in the month of Shrdivan ( August). - 
At Vavanje in the Panwel taluka of the 
Kolaba District, offerings of coins, etc., to 
sacred trees are made at the time of Parivani 
(a festival). For instance, wlien the no moon 
day falls on Monday, the women worship the 
Pipal tree, and on the full moon daj- of Jestha 
(Jime) they worship tiie Banyan tree. The 
custom prevails of the worship of a well by 
women after their delivery. A woman, after 
completing the period of her confinement or 
ceremonial impurity, is taken to a well, from 
which she has to bring home water, and is re- 
quired to worship tJie well with tlic following 
materials, viz : — cotton thread, copper coins, 
cocoanuts and such other fruit as can be had 
on the occasion.'' At Varsai in the Pen taluka 
of the Kolaba District, offerings of cotton 
cloth, copper coins, cocoanuts, betelnuts and 
plantains are made to the Banyan, Pipal, and 
Umbar trees, and also to holy wells. TJie 
Pipal, Tulsi, and Umbar trees are worshipped 
daily by women in this district, wliile the Ban- 
yan is worshipped on the full moon daj of 
Jestiia (June). The materials of worship 
are : — rice, fruits, water, sandalpaste, flowers, 
mangoes and jack fruits."* 

At Malad in the Thana District, the Ban- 
yan tree is worshipped by women of the Dwi- 
j"*, i.e., of the twice born castes, on the full 
moon day of the month of Jestha, Copper or 

sdver coins and fruit are offered to the tree 
These offerings are taken by tlic Brahman 
priest, who explains to them the mcdes of 
worship. The Bralmian priest is also given 
some money as a gift. Tiiis J'rala, i.e., vow, is 
observed by women by fasting for tliree suc- 
cessive days, from the 13th to the 15tli day of 
tlie bright liaif of Jesiha (June). Tlie Pipal 
tree is worshipped daily by some uien and 
women of the Brahman caste. A\'oraen walk 
round this tree for a hundred and eight times 
or more daily. Some persons liold a thread 
ceremony for the Pipal tree in order to obtain 
a son, and worsliip the tree for a certain 
period. It is worsliipped with fruit and cop- 
per coins. M'ouden cradles are also offered to 
the tree. Wells are worshipped on auspicious 
days such as Parwani by women of tJie upper 
castes.^ At Padghe in the Tliana District the 
Banyan tree is worsliipped on the full moon 
day of Jestha, and the Pipal is worshipped 
every Saturday in the montii of ^hidwan 
(August). The Pipal tree is not worshipjied 
before tlie performance of its thread ceremonj-, 
and its tiiread ceremony is not performed till the 
tree bears at least one thousand leaves. '' 

At Kolhapur, tlie Banyan and Pipal trees 
are considered very holy, and offerings of 
rags, coins, etc., are made to them. It is a 
custom among the Hindu women to worship 
the Banyan tree on the full moon day of Jes- 
tha, Offerings of clotli and fruit are made 
to this tree, and copper or silver coins are given 
as dakshana. Some women make a small mo- 
del in gold, silver, or copper of the Banyan 
tree or of its leaf, and present it to tlie Brah- 
man priest along with a present of money. 
All tliese rites are required to be strictlv per- 
formed as enjoined in the Shdstras,'' 

1 School Master, Anjarle, Ratnagiri. 
' School Master, Vavanje, Kolaba. 
5 School Master, Haliid, Thana. 

2 School Master, Ibhrampur, RatnigiriJ 
4 School Master, Varsai, Koldba. 
6 School Master, Padghe, Tlidna. 

' RaO Saheb Shelke, Kolbapur. 



At Nagothane in the Kolaba District, it is 
believed tliat men who arc well versed in llie 
manlras of witchcraft and sorcery souietiuies 
transfer diseases from one person to another. ^ 
Vaccination is believed to be a method of 
transferring disease to otlier pcrsons.- 

At Malad in the Th;in;i District a method 
•of transferring disease from one person to 
anotlicr is in practice among the ■Shuilias, It 
is as follows : — A woman without a child cuts 
secretly a little jjieee from the garment of a 
woman who has children. She then Imrns tlic 
piece, jiuts the ashes into water, and the mixture 
is then drunk by the barren woman. It is 
believed tliat, by so doing, tlie e\il spirit of 
the disease that is troubling the barren woman 
is transferred to the other who has children. 
The barrenness of the first woman then 
disappears, and she begets cliildren. It is said 
that if the second woman comes to know of th( 
miscJiief before using that garment, she 
discontinues the use of the same, and no liarm 
is done to her.'' 

In tJie Umbergaon taluka of the Tiiani 
District the methods of transferring disease 
are called Muth Mdrane i. e., a bi^witched 
lime is sent to the person to wliom the disease 
is to be transferred. Various mantras are also 
secretly repeated witli the object of trans- 
ferring the disease to an enemy.' 

At Kolhapur, there are no methods of 
transferring disease to other persons, but it is 
said that the following ceremony is practised 
in the case of persons suffering from swollen 
glands. Rice, Udid grain etc. are tied in a 
yellow clotli, and three knots are made in it. 
This is then kept ior one niglit under t)ie 
pillow of the diseased person. It is taken out 

tile next morning and tlirown away at a place 
wlirre tliree roads meet. It is then supposed 
tliat tile person who steps on the bundle first is 
attacked with tile disease, and the one for 
wJKjin the rite is performed is cured.-' 

At Devgad taluka in tlie Ratnagiri District 
it is believed tliat evil spirits are fond of 
things like a cock, cocoanuls, boiled nee, etc., 
and when a person considers himself attacked 
by evil spirits, these tilings are waved round 
liis body and tlirown away at some distance 
from his residence. This is generally done in 
the evening, but if necessary it can be done at 
any time. The person who goes to throw these 
things away is prohibited from looking behind. 
The things required for a haVt^ i. e., oblation, 
on such occasions are boikd rice, red powder, 
and an oil lamp made of black cotton wick."' 

In the Vengurla taluka of the Ratnagiri 
District, when a person is suffering from any 
disease for a long time, and when ordinary 
medicines prove to be ineffective, a goat or a 
eock is waved rouiiid the body of the patient, 
and are then put beyond the village boundary 
or t;iken away by the sorcerer. While 
performing this rite, the man must repeat 
certain inantrasj 

At Fonda in the Ratnagiri District, the use 
of scapegoats is resorted to in cases of persons 
supposed to have been attacked by evil spirits. 
Curds and boiled rice are waved round the 
body of the diseased person and thrown away 
at a distance from the house. In some eases it 
is said that the cock wliich is waved round 
the body of the sick person dies instantane- 

In the Malwan taluka of llie Ratnagiri Dis- 
trict the scapegoat (often a cock) is waved 

' Suhool Master, Nagothane. KoUtba. 

' School Master, Mahid, Thiina. 

' Rao Saheb Shelke, Kolhiipur. 

' School Master, Ubhiidjinda, Ratnagiri. 

" School Master, Navare, Ratnsigiri. 
* School Master, Shirgaon, Thana. 
i'' School Master, Mitbiv, Ratnagiri. 
8 School Master^ Fonde, Ratnrigiri, 



three times round the sick person and thrown 
into the street. The man who goes to throw 
it away is prohibited from looking behind. 
Burnt cowdung ashes are thrown out of the 
■door after the man has left t]ie house, and the 
door is closed at once.^ 

In the Dapoli taluka, coeoanuts, curds, 
boiled rice, turmeric powder, red powder, cocks 
e^c. are waved round the bod_y of the sick 
person and taken beyond th(; village boundary 
or to a big tree supposed to be haunted by 
■evil spirits, and in some cases these things are 
thrown away where four roads meet.^ 

In the Rajapur taluka of.the Ratnagiri 
District scapegoats are used by tlie low caste 
people, while Brahmans use coeoanuts, boiled 
•rice and copper coins. ^ At Kalse in the Rat- 
nagiri District eggs, cocks, goats, etc. are used 
as scapegoats. These things are waved round 
the body of the patient, and taken beyond the 
village limits or /ar from the residence of the 
sick person. For this rite a man from the 
Ghadi, Gur.iv, Raval, or Mahar caste is in- 
vited at niglit, and he is paid in casli for liis 

At Ibhrampur in the Ratnagiri District, the 
•cocks and goals used for driving out evil 

spirits from the body of the patient are not 
thrown away^ but are eaten by the exorcist.' 

At Navre in the Ratnagiri District, hens 
are used to extract the poison of snake bites 
from the body of the sufferer. In cases of 
evil spirits alone, coeoanuts, cocks and goats 
are used as scapegoats.*' 

At Dasgaon in the Kolaba District, a Paradi 
(basket) containing black glass beads, bangles, 
turmeric and red powders, sweetmeat of five 
sorts, flowers, cocoanut, a burning scented 
stick, and rice, is waved three times round the 
body of the patient, and thrown away outside 
the village.^ 

At Kolhapur, tlie use of fowls, goats, limes, 
coeoanuts, cojiper coins, dry chillies and salt 
is in vogue, not only in eases of sick persons, 
but also wlicn a person performs a feat such 
as bending an iron bar, or doubling with his 
hands a silver coin, or winning a victory in 
wrestling. The articles are then waved round 
him and thrown away in order that he may 
not suffer from an evil eye. Aniong tlie rich 
the same rite is performed on ordinary occa- 
sions such as leaving a house, starting on a 
journey etc. In cases of illness it is specially 
performed in the evening, and the articles are 
thrown away at the outskirts of the village, 
or by tlie side of a well.* 

1 School Master, Bandivade, Ratniigiri. 
' School Master, Adivare, Ratnagiri. 
5 School Master, Ibhrampur, Ratniigiri. 
' School Master, Dasgaon, Kolaba. 

^ School Master, Anjarla, Ratnagiri. 
' School Master, Kalse, Ratnagiri. 

* School Master, Navre, Ratnagiri. 

* Rao Sahib. Shelke, Kolhdpur. 



III the Koiikan, especially among tlie lower 
classes, a strong belief prevails regarding the 
mortalily of tlie spirits of the dead and of 
their re-appearance or re-birth in their 
cliildren. /Vnd for this reason, as well as for 
protection against evil, the dead ancestors are 

The custom regarding the worship of an- 
cestors prevailing at Kalshe in the Ratuagiri 
District is as follows :— The worship of an- 
cestors is called Shrdddha {annivcTsaiy) . It 
is performed on the no moon day of every 
montli, on the date of the deatli of the person 
every year, and also on the same date of the 
dark half of the month of Bhddrapada (Sep- 
tember). Among the Brahmans, Brahman 
priests are invited, worshipped, and are given a 
feast, after worsliipping balls of boiled rice 
as representing the dead ancestors. The 
special materials used for worship are sesa- 
mum and barley grain. The same custom 
prevails among non-Brahmans with the excep- 
tion that the balls are made of rice flour and 
not of boiled rice. To partake of the food on 
such occasions,, the lower classes invite married 
persons of their own caste. The anniversary 
dav of Sddhus and Mahants, i.e. saints, is 
called Punya tithi i.e. the day of merit. 

It is commonly believed that spirits are 
mortal. The life of the deceased remains in 
the spirit condition until the sins which he 
may have committed are washed away by the 
good deeds of his descendants. There is no 

belief that one spirit dies and another takes 
its place, but it is believed that the ancestors 
are sometimes reborn in the same family.^ 

At Ubhadanda in the Vengurla taluka of 
tlie Ratnagiri District ancestors are worshipped 
every 3'ear on the same date of the month 
(according to the Hindu calendar year) on 
which the person died, by performing a Shrdd- 
dlia rite. Tliey are also worshipped on the 
same date in the second half of Bhddrapada 
(September) every year. This is by a rite 
called Mahdlaya Shrdddha, On both these 
occasions Brahmans are invited, and the wor- 
shipping ceremony is performed by repeating 
the mantras. After the ceremony, all the invit- 
ed guests men and women partake of food. 

Sadhus are worshipped after washing their 
feet with sandal paste, flowers, cocoanuts and 
gifts of money. •; 

It is believed that evil spirits undergo a 
transformation after a lapse of twelve years. 
The practice of giving the names of ancestors 
to children is common, and it is due to the 
belief that the spirits of the dead are reborn 
in children in the same family. - 

At Pendur in the Ratnagiri District the 
ancestors are worshipped on the last day of 
every Hindu calendar month. This montlily 
worship is caUed Darsha ShrdddKa. The 
annual anniversay of the manes is celebrated 
by the ceremony called tlie Sdmvatsarik 
Shrdddha, If any ancestor has died after 
becoming a recluse or Sanydsi, his body is- 

^ School Master, Kalse, Ratnagiri. 

2 School Master, Ubhdddnda, Ratnagiri. 



buried, and a tomb called a samddhi is erected 
over it; and his descendants, instead of per- 
forming the annuil Shriiddha, worship the 
tomb o'f the recluse every day. It is believed 
that the spirits take a different form after the 
lapse of seven generations. The belief that 
the spirits of tiie dead are reborn in the same 
family prevails auiong the people of tliis dis- 
trict. The fallowing meisures are ndopted for 
the purpose of identification. When a person 
dies in a family, a basil or bcl leaf is placed 
on a certain part of the body, or SDuie 
sign is made in sandal paste ; and when a child 
is born in ihe family, its body is carefully 
examined to ascertain whether tliere are any 
signs on the body of the child such as were 
made on the dead body of the ancestor. If 
the same sign appears to the satisfaction of 
the members of the family, it is believed that 
the dead person has been reborn in the same 

At Navare in tlie Ratnigiri District Brah- 
nians are in\ ited, worshipped and given a feast 
inhonour of ancestors. Sddhits and Mahants, or 
saints, are worshipped by giving them the s mie 
honour accorded to the family deities.- 

At Basani in the Ratn%iri District the 
anniversary diy of saints is observed by tlie 
performance of a Bhajan^ which consists in 
singing the good deeds of saints and in off"ering 
prayers. It is believed that spirits are mortal, 
but tliey do not die like ordinarj- human beings. 
They cease to exist as spirits as soon as the 
period of their release is over. The spirits 
obtain absolution by visiting certain lioly 

At Dabhol in the Ratnagiri District the 
people believe that the souls of ancestors are 
reborn in children in the same family if some 

of their desires remain unfulfilled at the time 
of tlieir demise."* 

At Shiravde in tiie Ratnagiri District ances- 
tors are worshipped every year by performing 
the rites called tar pan ^ which consist in offering 
oblations of holy water, sesamuiii, barley grains 
and repeating pra_vers. The tarpan is obser- 
ved on tlie very date of the nionlh in which the 
person died. The procedure of worshipping 
the Hindu saints is similar to' that cf the other 
deities. Owing to the belief that the spirit 
of the dead are reborn in children in the same 
family the name of the grandfather is given 
to the grandson.^' 

At Xilringre in the Ratnagiri taluka ances- 
tors arc worshipped by inviting Brahman 
priests, and worshipping Ihtin with sandal 
paste and flowers. These Brahmans are 
supposed to represent the father, grandfather 
and great grandfather of the worshipper.'' 

At Bandivadc in the Ratnagiri District the 
leaves of the herb called piidina^ (a good medi- 
cine for wurms) sesamuui, and daibJia grass are 
required for the worsliip of ancestors. The 
man who worships the ancestors has to turn liis 
sacred thread from the right hand to the left.^ 

At Anjarle in the Ratnagiri District Mahants 
and Sddhus are worshipped in tlieir life- 
time like family deities, and their tombs are 
worshipped after their death.'* 

At P'onde in the Ratnagiri District ancestors 
are worshipped by making balls of boiled rice 
on their anniversary day. Tiie balls are suppos- 
ed to take the place of the dead parents, and 
they are worshipped with sandal paste and 
flowers, and by burning incense and lighting a 
lamp of clarified butter. Betelnuts and leaves, 
cocoanuts and Dakshina (presents of money) 
are given to them. People also bow before them. 

1 School Master, Pendur, Ratnagiri, 
3 School Master, Basani, Ratnagiri. 
5 School Master, Shiravde, Ratnagiri. 
7 School Master, Baadivade, Ratnagiri, 

- School Master, Navare, Ratnagiri, 
* School Master, Dabhol, Ratndgiri. 
1^ School Master, Ntiringre, Ratnagiri. 
s School Master, Anjarle, Ratnagiri. 



Mahants and Sddhus are worshipped bj' wash- 
inc: their feet, sindal ])astc is applitd to their 
body, and tliey are garhinded with fiow(rs. 
Cocoanuts^ a piece of ch)th and a gift in coins 
are given to them accorJiny; to the means of 
the giver. It is said tliat spirits can remain as 
spirits for about a thousand years. ^ 

At Vijayadurg in tiie Ratnj'igiri District 
the method of worshipping ancestors is as 
follows: — In some cases elderly parents as well 
as a grandfather and great grandfather are also 
worsliipped, their feet are washed with water, 
and the water is accepted as iirth or holywater. 
While worshipping the Mahants and Sddhus, 
or saints, water is poured on their right hand, 
and they are worshipped witli sandal paste 
and flowers, and given a dakshana or gifts of 
inonej' according to one's means and will. 
The pddukas, or foot prints, of siints are 
worshipped after their death. - 

At Mitbav in the Ratnagiri District holy 
persons such as Sanyasis are worsliipped after 
their death by jjcrforming their anniversary 
ceremony everj' j'ear. It is believed that 
spirits are mortal. Evil spirits such as munjas, 
etc., undergo a kind of transformation, and 
it is believed that this occurs at places like 
Narsoba's W;idi.^ 

At Devgad in the Ratnagiri District ances- 
tors are worshipped on their anniversarj' days, 
the manes being represented by pieces of 
Darblia grass and balls of boiled rice.'' 

At Poladpur in the Kolaba District a person 
whose father is alive but wlio has lost his 
mother's father, has to perform the Shrdddha 
of that grandfather on the 1st day of the bright 
half of Ashwin (October),, Tliis Shrdddha is 
called Duhitra. A person wiio Jias lost liis 
wife lias to perform the Shrdddha for that 

wife on the 9tli day of the dark half of the 
month of Bhddrapada, This day is called 
Ahcv Navami. Tiicse different sorts oi Shrdd- 
dhas are observed only by the liigh class^ 
Hindus. The lower classes worship their 
ancestors on tlie last day of the month of 
Bhddrapada by preparing a ball of boiled rice 
or flour, and putting it out for the crows to eat. 
It is belie\id that spirits are mortal. The 
ceremonj' called Narayan Xagabali is per- 
formed when it is believed that tlie spirit of an 
ancestor is giving trouble to tlic family. M'hen 
this rite is performed, the spirit is saved and 
tlu; ailment ceases. It is believed that the 
spirits of the dead are sometimes reborn in 
children in the same family, and in such cases- 
the names of the ancestors are given to their 
children by tlie people.^ 

At Khopoli in the Karjat taluka of tlie 
Kolaba District the form of worship of ances- 
tors is similar to tiiat of tile ordinary Hindu 
deities. In the case of tlie worsliip of the 
deities the person performing tJie worship has- 
to sit witii his face towards the east, while at 
the worship of the ancestors he has to sit with 
his face towards the south." 

At Cliaul in the Kohiba District, tlie tombs- 
of Sanydsis^ i.e. ascetics and Sddhus are wor- 
shipped on their amiiversary days, and a great 
fair is held in their honour. Tiie other ances- 
tors are worshi])ped by the shrdddha rites. The 
anniversary of the founders of the different 
sects is observed by their followers by a 
bhajan, i. e. singing songs in tlieir own style 
and exhibiting tlie different insignia and flag 
of tilt' sect as advi.scd by tlieir founders.' 

Tlie people of Chidhran in the Kolaba 
District believe that tile period for which the 
soul has to remain in the spirit state depends 

1 School Master, Fonde, Ratndgiri. 
3 School Master, Mitbav, Ratnagiri 
5 School Master, Poladpur, Kolaba. 

2 School Master, Vijayadurg, Ratndgiri. 
^ School Master, Devgad, Ratnagiri. 
School Master, Khopoli, Kolaba. 
School Master, Chaul, Kolaba. 



upon the sins of the person, or tlie wishes which 
remained unfulfilled during his life lime. It 
is not that all tiie spirits of the dead are 
reborn in children. The rebirth depends upon 
the good or bad deeds of the deceased. 
However, if the nature of any child suggests 
the nature of any dead person in the family, it 
is assumed that the spirit of the deceased has 
returned to the family. ^ 

At Nagothane in the Pen taluka of the 
Kolaba District some of the communities 
worship small images called tanks on the 
anniversary of their ancestors' death ; among 
the Sliudras food is given to the crows on the 
last day of Bhdclrapad, The custom of 
giving a, grandfather's name to the grandson 
prevails largely, and is due to the belief that 
the spirits of the dead are sometimes reborn 
in the same family.- It is also said that in 
some of the Hindu communities, if a child 
cries continuously, ashes are applied to its 
forehead in the name of one of the ancestors 
in the family ; and if the child sleeps quietly 
or stops crying, the name of that ancestor is 
given to it.'' 

At Shirgaon in tlie Thana District, the 
worship of ancestors is performed on the 
day of the father's death, every year. On 
any auspicious occasion the rite called Ndndi 
shrdddha is performed at the begimiing of the 
ceremony. It is believed that evil spirits or 
ghosts have to remain in the ghostly state for 
about one thousand years, or at least imtil one 
of the descendants in the family goes to 
a holy place like Kdsld (Benares) and there 
performs the shrdddha rites of his ancestors.^ 

At Malad in the Thana District, tlie 
worship of ancestors is performed on the day 
of the father's death every month till the 

completion of one year by inviting Brahman* 
and giving them a feast. This is done among 
Bralmians only. The other comumnities worsliip 
their ancestors by performing the rite called 
Chata Shrdddha and by giving Shidha^ i,e. rice 
pulse, vegetables and ghi to Brahman priests. 
A feast is then given to their casteuien.^ 

At Kolhapur, ancestors, Mahants and Sd- 
dhus are worshipped by the riles known as the 
Puranic ritual, that is, no Vedic mantras are 
repeated while performing- these rites. It is a 
common belief in this province tliat the soul 
of the person who has committed a murder, or 
has incurred debt and enmity, is obliged to 
repay the debt by being born again as a 
servant or in some other subordinate capacity 
of the debtor.'-" 

Tlie tombs of the Hindu and Mahomedan 
saints are considered holy, but they arc not 
supposed to possess miracular powers.'' The 
following is a list of saints who have been 
deified and worshipped by tlie people of the 
Ratnagiri District. (1) Mukundraj, (2) 
Dnyandev, (3) Tukaram, (4) Eknath 
(5) Namdev, (6) Ramdiis, (7) Akkalkotche 
Swami, (8) Ranganath, (9) Dev Mamlatdar 
(10) Kabir, (11) Kamal, (12) Nipat 
Niranjan, (13) Tulshidas, (14) Pundalik, 
(15) Vashistha, (16) Dattatraya, (17) 
Sohiroba, (18) Gorakshanath, (19) Pur- 

At Shiroda in the Ratnagiri District a 
practice prevails of making vows to the tombs 
of women who burnt themselves as Satvis. 
Vows are also made to the Musalman Pirs, 
and offerings are often made in fulfilment of 
such vows.s 

At the fort of Vishdlgad there is a tomb of 
a Pir (saint). It is usual to make a vow to 

1 School Master, Chidhran, KoUba. 
5 School Master, Vavanje, Kolaba. 
5 School Master, Malad, Thana. 
'! School Master, Peodur, Ratnagiri. 

2 School Master, Ndgothane, KoUba. 
« School Master, Shirgaon, Thdna. 
6 Rao Saheb Shelke, Kolhapur. 
8 School Master, Shiroda, Ratnagiri. 



worsliip this Pir witli ftttcrs on one's legs, and 
it is believed that, at the time of worsliip, llie 
chains break off'.^ 

There is at Dahibav in tlic Ratnagiri 
District a toiiib of a Hindu saint named A7i;j 
Anand Murli^ to wliieh the people of that 
locality make vows ^vhen severe calamities 
befall them, and it is believed that the saint 
listens to their prayers. ^ 

When a Br;ihman assumes the garb of a 
recluse or Sanijdsi, he is considered by the 
people as sacred as a Hindu god, and is 
worshipped witli great reverence, provided he 
abides by the rules contained in the -ihastras.^ 

There is a tomb of a Pir at Bawa Malangad 
in the Panwel taluka of the Kolaba District) 
where tlie people make vows to the Pir, and it 
is believed tliat the Pir fulfils their wishes. 
Hindu saints such as Ramdas, Dnyaneshwar, 
Niimdev are Jield in great honour in tliis 

There is a temple of Ndgoha at Avas in 
the Kolaba District wliere persons suffering 
from snake-bite, if carried to the temple while 
still alive, are said to be cured.'"' 

At Kawad in the Bliiwandi taluka of llie 
Thana District there is a tomb of a 
Uralimachari named ■Sakhdriim Bi'iva wli ) has 
been deified by the people of that District. 
A great fair is held at tlie tomb every year." 

The following instance is given of a miracle 
at the tomb Sahhdram Bdva of Kawad. A 
man suffering from fits showed an inclination 
to go to Kawad to read Guru Charitra for 
seven successive days. He was taken to tliat 
place accordingly. After his arrival, he 
continued to suffer from tliese fits in tlic 

morning and evening at the tin'e of the 
worship at tlie tomb. Once during the fits he 
said that lie would be free from the disease if 
Rs. 200 were spent in giving a feast to the 
Brahmans at Piili. Tlie relatives of the sufferer 
agreed to arrange accordingly, and instantly the 
man put his head on the Siimddhi (tomb) and 
threw himself on Ills back. He came to his 
senses after ten minutes, and from tliat time he 
was completely cured. A feast was then given 
to the Brjihmans at Pali, and Rs. 200 were 
spent over it as promised. Another instance 
of miracular power is cited, and that is of the 
priest of the goddess Mahnlu.i-mi of Kolwan. 
This priest goes up and hoists the flag of the 
goddess on a steep hill which no other person 
can climb, and it is believed tliat he can do 
this only when the spirit of the goddess en ers 
his body.'' 

At Umbergaon in the Th;ina District there 
is a niiracle-workiiig tomb of a saint called the 
Datar " Pir." Sakharambava of Angaon 
Kawad, a Hindu saint, is held in high honour 
in this village.^ At this place it is a'so believed 
that some of the Pirs walk round the village at 
night, and their 'ombs are said to be seen in 
motion. The Datar Pir is worsliipjjed even 
by the Hindus of that locality.^ 

At Shirosi in the Miirbad Taluka of the 
Thana District, Sakharauibava of Kawad, Dev 
Mamlatdar, Chandirarabuva of Khed, Narayan- 
buva of Nanuri, the 'Swdmi of Akkalkot, the 
Stvdmi of Kumbhar Peth at Kolli.ipur, and 
the Dandekerbuva of Rajapur are the principal 
saints held In honour by the people.^*' 

At Manikpur in the Thana District it is said 
that a bright light or flames emanate from 
certain tombs of Musalman saints. ^^ 

1 School Master, Sakliarane, Ratnagiri, 
' Scliool Master, Adivare, Ratndgiri. 

• School Master, Akshi, Kolaba. 
' School Master, Padghe, Tlulna. 

• School Master, Umbergaon, Thiina. 

" School Master, Manikpur, Thana. 

- School Master, Niiringre, Ratnagiri. 
•■ School Master, Chauk, Ratniigiri. 
" School Master, Vada, Thana. 
^ School Master, Dahiinu, Thana. 
'" School Master, Shirosi, Thiina. 



At Uuiela in the Thana District it is said 
that flames and smoke are given out from the 
tombs of certain M;iliomedan saints situated in 
the locality. Tliese flames appear and 
disappear very suddenly. ^ 

In the Kolhapur District people believe that 
the Samddhi of Swiimi Anandmurti, wlio was 
a disciple of Raghmiatli Swarai of Bhramanal, 
shakes on the Shiwardtri day, that is the 13th 
of the dark half of Mdgha^ and on the Ran.a- 
nawami day i. e. the 9tli of the bri ht half of 
Chaitra^ at the time of the worship called 
Bhauin. Among the tombs held most sacred 
b^' the Hindus of the Konkan may be mentioned 
the following viz: BhujangSwami of Lokapur, 
RamdasSwami,tlie Samddhi o{ Shii Shankara- 
charya at Shirgaon, Chintaman Swami of 
Murgud, and the Samddhi of Mangalmurti 
Morya at Chincliwad near Poena. All these 
Swdinis Were Brahma,chdris or bachelors, and 
they spent their lives in the service of God and 
preached virtue and morality to the masses. 
These Samddhis are of two kinds: (1) of saints 
after death, and (2) of saints on tlie point of 
death. The tliird kind is called Jal Samddhi, 
i.e. immersion in water, but no tomb of the 
latter kind is to be found in this Province. It 
is said that, if a lime is placed above the Samd- 
dhi of Bhujanga Swami, it begins to shake at 
the time of the -irti ceremony. The present 
disciple of Bhujanga Swami sits in (Samddhi) 
meditation continuously for four to eight days 
There prevails a belief at Kolhapur tliat the 
sivdmi whose body is buried in the tomb at 
Chinchwad is still alive. Some years ago when 
the present disciple of the Chinchwad Swami 
was an.Kious to take Samddh.^ he had a dream in 
which the stvdmi in the tomb told him that he 
was still living in that Samddhi^ and tliat there- 
fore there was no need for his disciple to take 
Samddh, He was thus obliged to forego the 
project. The Peshwas of Pbona, who were 
staunch devotees of the Chinchwad swdmi, and 
by whose favour they were raised to a position 

of social equality among the Deccan Brahmans, 
granted an Inavi of some villages for the 
maintenance of this Samddhi^ and the British 
Government have allowed the descendants of 
the swdmi to retain the Inum, The following 
are the principal Musalman saints who have 
been deified in the Kolhapur District: — 

(1) ndha Jamdl, (2) Ghod Pir^ (3>) Bara 
Imdni^ (4) Avachit Pii\ (5) Buran Sdheb 
and (i) Miia Sdheb of Miraj_ All these 
Pirs have been supplied with annual grants of 
money b_v the Kolhapur State. ^ 

At Ubliadanda in the Vengurla taluka of 
the Ratniigiri District some Hindus have adopt- 
ed the worship of Mahomedan saints, Maho- 
medan Pirs are worshipped in the month of 
Moharram, On these occasions Hindus beg 
in the town in the disguise of Fakirs^ and the 
alms thus obtained are offered to the Pir. 
They make oH'eriugs of water to the Pirs, while 
the tdbuis are being carried to the sea for 
immersion. But this practice is being slowly 

At Bandivade in the Ratnagiri District 
Hindus offer cocoanuts and khichadi to the 
Pirs at the time of the Moharram^ and at some 
places a lamp is kept burning every Monday in 
honour of a Pir.'' 

At Kiilbadevi in the Ratnagiri taluka there 
is a tomb of a Musalman saint who is worship- 
ped by the Hindus. Similarly there is a Pir 
at Gaonkhddi in the Rajapur taluka who is 
held in reverence even by high caste Hindus.^ 

At Ade in the Dapoli taluka of tlie Ratnagiri 
District there is a tomb of a Musalman saint 
which is worshipped by the Hindus including 
the Bralimans. The building and also the 
mosque in that village have been repaired from 
contributions obtained fromhighclass Hindus." 
Many Hindus of Devagad in the Raln:»giri 
District worship Musalman saints. Occasional- 
ly they offer cocoanuts to tdbuts, and throw 
red powder over them. They also make vows 
to the Pirs.'^ 

1 School Master, Umela, Thana. ^ r^o Saheb Shelke, Kolhdpur. 

3 School Master, Ubhaddnda, Ratnagiri. * School Master, Bandivade, Ratnagiri, 

5 School Master, Basani, Ratnagiri, « School Master, Murud, Ratna'giri, 

1 School Master, Devagad, Ratn-^giri. 



There are two Pirs at Vij.iyadurg who are 
worshipped by tlif Hindus. Tlie same practice 
prevails at Raj.ipur and Kharepatan.^ 

At Chauk in the Karjat taluka of the Koldba 
District some Hindus worship Pirs. The 
members of the Ketkar family of Chauk arc 
the Pujdris or ministrants of the Musalman 
saint known as Bdva Mdlangad, This shows 
that even Brahmans worship Musalman 
saints. - 

The tomb of Bavd Mdlangad situated in 
tlie Kolaba District is worshipped first by a 
Brahman and then by Musalmans. The Brah- 
man worshipper performs this task more for 
the pecuniary benefit which he derives from the 
worship than from faith in the divinity of 
the Pir.3 

At Poladpur in the Mahad taluka of the 
Kolaba District there are no instances of 
Musalman saints being worshipped by Hindus, 
but persons wisliing to have children make 
vows to Pirs, and children born by the favour 
of such Pirs are required to assume tlie robe 
of a Fakir during the Moharram festivities.* 

The practice of worshipping such saints 
exists at Khopoli in tlie Kolaba District. 
Persons in trouble, or desirous of getting 
children, make vows to tlie saint Imam Hussein, 
and when their desires are fulfilled thej' dress 
themselves as Fakirs and beg at certain places 
during the Moharram festivities.'' A certain 
Lakshman Gangadhar Joshi of Rewdanda in 
the Kolaba District is tlie Mujdwar (priest or 
ministrant) of a Musalman saint Chdnsewalli 
and be holds an Lndm in connection with his 
office of Mujdwar of the saint's DargaS' 

At Akshi in the Kolaba District there is a 
tomb of a Pir which is worshipped by lower 
class Hindus such as Kolis, Mdlis and 

The Hindus of Bluiwan in the Murbad 
taluka of thfe Kolaba District worship the Pir 

of the locality. It is said that the cultivators 
of the village on;e lost their cattle, and that 
a Fakir attributed the loss to the rage of the 
Pir. Since that time they are careful to worship 
the saint, and the result is that there has been 
no disease among their cattle. They offer 
Malinda i. e. bread and jdgri, to the Pir every 

The Hindu inhabitants of Malad in the 
Thana District sprinkle water over the roads 
by which the tdbuts are to pass, and allow 
their children to pass beneath the tdbuts. 
Some throw sweetmeat on the tdbuts, and 
distribute the same to the poor.^ 

At Shirgaon in the Malum taluka of tlie 
Thana District some Hindus make vows to the 
local Pir and take part in the tdbut procession. 
Thev pour water over the feet of the tdbut 
bearers, and throw abir (black scented powder) 
and flowers on the tdbuts. They also distribute 
to the fakirs Malinda, or KMchadi.^^' 

The Mujdwar (priest) of the saint JValli 
Amir Shalia of Shahapur in the Thana 
District is a Maratha bj' caste. ^^ 

In the Kolhapur District Pirs are held in 
great reverence by Hindus. They make vows 
to the Pirs in order to get a son, and when 
their object is fulfilled they offer a preparation 
of Til (sesamum) and sugar called Rewadi, 
and other sweets called Change, Malinda and 
Pedhe at the time of Mohjurram. They also 
give Fakiri to their sons in the tdbut season. 
Some of them even bring a tdbut and Ndl 
sdheb to their houses, and spend mueli money 
on them for illuminations, etc. They dance 
from one Ndlpir to the other saying that the 
Nalpir lias entered their bodies. While going 
through tlie streets they cry out very loudly 
the words 'Yalli Dhulla\ The holiday of the 
Moharram is obsereved for ten days. On the 
tenth day the tdbuts and the Ndlpirs are taken 

I School Master, Vijaydurg, Rjtnigir', 
3 School Master, Chidhran, Kolaba. 
5 School Master, Khopoli, Kolaba. 
' School Master, Akshi, KoUlba. 
9 School Master, Miilad, Thana. 

2 School Master, Chauk, Kulaba. 
* School Master, Poladpur, Kolaba. 
6 School Master, Chow), Kolaba. 
' School Master, Bhuwan, Thdna. 
1' School Master, Shirgaon, Thana. 

" School Master, Shirosi, Thdna. 



to tlio river for tlie purpose of iaimersioii. 
Wliile returning home from the river witli tlic 
bundle of tiie Patka of Xtilpir on tlieir iieads 
Ihev cry out loudly the following words : 
"Alah'idAjio I'la bitlaslia i/a Ilitsaii bani 
ulidoshdke sultan albida" . On the third day 
after the immersion of idbufs into the river, 
the Pirs devotees kill a goal in the nan c of 
their patron Pir and make a preparation of 
the goat's flesh called Konduri} 

The following rites are in vogue for the 
cure of barrenness in the village of Dabliol in 
the Ilatnagiri District. — (1) Walking round 
iJie Pip(d tree daily; (2) Observing a fast for 
sixteen successive Mondays ; (3) Performing 
the worsliip of Shiva after observing tjie 
aforesaid fast.- 

At Kiilshc iu the Malwan taluka of the 
Ratnagiri District a barren woman is required 
to walk round a Pipal tree every day in the 
morning, and if the barrenness be attributed 
to the disfavour of any deity or the attack of 
an evil spirit, the same deity or the evil spirit 
is invoked and worshipped by the woman her- 
self, or through a medium who knows tlie 
appropriate mode of worship.* 

To steal an earthen image of the God 
Oanpati, to make a cross or a S7vdstika on the 
bodies of children with marking nut, and the 
worship of tlie god Mdruti or some other 
powerful deity at midnight in the no moon by 
a barren woman, after divesting herself of her 
clothes, are rural methods for the cure of 
barrenness observed at Anjarle and other 
places in the Dapoli taluka of the Ralnagiri 

At Bandivade in the Ratnagiri District 
copper amulets and black cotton strings are 
used to cure barrermess. Some people make 
vows to a particular deity, and some perform 
the lite of NdgabaliJ' 

To walk romid Pipal and Umbar trees, to 
circumambulate tlie temple of a particular 
deitv, and to make vows to that deity, to recite 
or have recited the holy scripture Harivansha 
are methods in practice for cure of barrenness 
at Achre in the Malwan taluka of the 
Ratniigiri District.'^ 

-^t Vijayadurg in the Ralnagiri District, it 
is believed that beating a woman at the time 
of an eclipse is one of the surest methods of 
curing barrenness. Some people give charity, 
observe fasts, worship certain deities and 
make vows to tliem to obtain children. •■ 

At Ubhad.inda in the Ratniigiri District 
stealing the idol of Krishna when it is being 
worshipped on the 8th day of tlie dark half 
of Skrdwayi (August), tlie birth day of the 
god Krishna, and putting a cocoanut or a 
betelnut in its place is believed to be the best 
method of curing barremiess.^ 

At Cliauk in the Kolaba Distiict, the same 
))lan of stealing the idol of the god Krisluia is 
observed as a cure for barrenness. But here 
the idol is returned with great pomp, and re- 
placed in its original place after the birth of a 
child. The godlings Ilanumdn and Baivan 
J'ir are also worshipped for the cure of 

At Poladpur in the Kolaba District the 
favourite method of curing barrenness is to 
obtain copper amulets and black or red cotton 
strings from a Fakir. ^^ 

The following are the methods in vogue for 
the cure of barrenness at Khopoli in the 
Kolaba District. 

(1) To inquire from a sorcerer the cause 
of barrenness, and then to perform the rites 
mentioned by him. 

(2) To use copper amulets and cotton 
strings taken from a Mdntrik i. e., one well 
versed in the mantras. 

' Riio Saheb Shelke, Kolliiipur. 

* School Master, Kalshe, Ralnagiri. 

5 School Master, Bandivade, Ratn^giri. 
^ School Master, Vijayadurg, Ratnigiri. 

* School Master, Chauk, Kolaba. 

- School Master, Dabhol, Ratnagiri. 

* School Master, Anjarle, Ratnagiri. 

* School Master, Achre, Ratnagiri. 

^ School Master, Ubhadanda, Ratnagiri; 
1" School Master, Poladpur, Kolabay 



(3) To walk round tlu- Tiihi (basil) 
plant or tlie Pipnl or Banyan tree daily in the 
morning after worslii})ping it. 

(4) To feed another woman's child, or to 
give milk to a child. ^ 

At Nata in the Kolaba District, a woman 
wishing to have a child is required to strike 
with a knife the Jack, the Tamarind, and the 
Champa trees during an eclipse. It is believed 
that by so doing the woman will bear a child, 
and the trees will also bear flowers and fruits. ^ 

At Medhe in the Roha taluka of the Kolaba 
District, the following methods arc in vogue 
for the cure of barrenness: — 

(1) To worship the god Shiva and to 
observe fasts on Mond:iys. 

(2) To worship the god Ganpati and to 
observe fasts on Sanlcasihi chaturthi i. e., the 
fourth day of the dark half of every month. 

(3) To walk round the temple of Mdruti 
and Pipal and Umbar trees every day, in the 

At Padaghe in the Bhiwandi taluka of the 
Thana District, images of Rama and Krishna 
are put into the lap of a barren woman en 
their resiiective birthdays i.e., the 9th day of 
the bright half of Chaitra, and the Sth day 
of the dark half of Shrdwan. Cocoanuts are 
also placed in her lap with these images.'' 

At Manikpur in the Thana District the 
goddess Shitala is worshipped by women to 
cure barrenness. TJiey observe fasts, and go 
to the temple of the goddess bare-footed with 
their hair loose and throwing milk on their 
path. They offer to the goddess wooden cradles 
and children's toys in fulfilment of their 

At Shirgaon in tlie Malum taluka of the 
Thana District, it is said that the repetition 
of the mantra" Santdii Gopdl jay'' is resorted 
to as a cure for barrenness.'' 

At W.'ide in tlie Thana Dislrict,women make 
vows even to minor deities such as Cludoba 
to get rid of barrenness. They also use coj)per 
amulets and cotton strings procured from a 
sorcerer well verstd in the use of mantras.' 

At Daln'gaon in the Thana District the 
worship of the god Shri Satya Niiniyan is 
Jield to cure barrenness. Some women also 
distribute to the poor jdgri equal to the 
weight of a eliild.'^ 

At Dehari in the Murbad taluka of the 
Tluina District, the village deity Dehari Mata 
is invoked and worshipjud by women for the 
cure of barrenness.'-' In tlie Kolhiipur District, 
the help of the family deities and of the 
household deities is invoked. U'omen lake 
turns round the Banyan, Pipal and Umbar^ 
trees. Some make vows to the geds, and 
perform certain propitiatory rites as well as 
the Ndrdijan Ndgabali. It is believed that 
the children do not live long if a member of the 
family has killed a snake, or if the fmicral 
rites of a person in the family have remaintd 
unperformed. The following ceremony is 
known as Xdrdi/an Ndgabali. A snake is made 
from the flour of Hdla (panic seed), and 
another made of gold is put into it. It is then 
burnt like a dead budy. All the ordinary 
funeral rites are perforiacd. After performing 
the eleventh day rites, homa, i.e., sacred Are, 
is kindled at night time, and after keeping 
vio-il for the whole night, milk and a dahshana 
are given to Brahmans. A feast is given to 
eleven Brahmans on that On the twelfth 
d IV sixteen Brahmans are fed, and on the 
thirteenth, five Brahmans are given a feast, 
after performing the Shrdddha rites. On the 
fourteenth day, ag-ain, a feast is given to about 
100 to 500 Brahmans according to the means 
of the host. It IS believed that, after the i)er- 
formance of these rites, the soul of the deceased 
reaches heaven, and there is an end to the 
troubles and misfortunes of the family.^* 

1 School Master, Khopoli, Kolaba. 
5 School Master, Medhe, Koliiba. 
5 School Master, Manikpur. Thana. 
7 School Master, Wiide. Tluina. 
° School Master, Dehari, Thiina. 

2 School Master; Ndta, Koldba. 
4 School Master, Padaghe, Thiina. 
6 School Master, Shirgaon, Thiina. 
6 School Master, Dahigaon, Thana. 
1" Riio Siiheb Shelke, Kolhiipur. 



At Ubhadanda in the Ratnagiri District the 
following dreams are believed to be lucky and 
propitious. To swim through the river or 
sea, to rise to the sky, to see the Sun, the 
Moon and the otlier planets, to eat meat, to 
bathe in blood, and to eat rice and curds. It 
is also believed that the sight of white objects 
in dreams foretells success in any work or 
undertaking tliat maj- be in view. A deity, a 
Brahman, a king, a married woman decked 
with ornaments, a bullock, a mountain, trees 
full of fruits, climbing the Umber tree, a 
looking glass, meat and flowers, if seen in 
dreams, are good omens. Climbing the 
Palas tree, If'arul i. e. an ant heap, the bitter 
lime tree, to marry, to use red clotlies or red 
flower garlands, to cat cooked meat, to see the 
sun and the moon witliout lustre, and to see 
shooting stars during dreams, are said to be 
bad omens. ^ 

At Mitbav in the Devgad taluka of the 
Ratnagiri District dreams are believed to 
be caused by indigestion and restlessness. 
To embrace a dead body in a dream, to see 
troubled waters, to dine heartily, are said to be 
bad omens. Feasting friends and receiving 
gifts from them are said to be good omens. - 

At Fonde in the Ratnagiri District dreams 
are said to indicate things that liave happened, 
or are about to happen in the near future. 
All white subslances other than cotton, salt, 
and bones, are considered auspicious, and all 

black substances excepting a lotus, a liorse, 
an elephant, and a deity are considered 

At Ibhrampur in tlie Chiplun taluka, hor- 
rible dreams are good omens, while pleasing 
dreams indicate approaching calamities.* 

At Pendur in tlie Ratnagiri District it is 
believed that dreams foretell future events. 
It is believed that the dream will prove correct 
and effective if the person dreaming has asked 
three questions and received three answers 
in liis dream. Those dreams which are caused 
through cold are called Jalap, They are 
generally false dreams, and no good omens are 
derived therefrom." 

At Basani in the Ratnagiri District it is 
believed that the ancestors who take interest 
in the welfare of their descendants appear in 
dreams and foretell future events, so that the 
dreaming person may take the needful precau- 
tions for the prevention of future calamities.*^ 

At Kalse in the Malwan taluka of the 
Ratnagiri District it is believed that dreams in 
the last part of the night, i. e., just before 
daybreak, and in which great men are seen, 
generally prove effective. If anybody sees 
himself married in a dream it is supposed that 
lie will Jiear of the death of some relative.^ 

At Cliauk in the Kolaba District it is 
believed that, when calamities are threatened, 
the guardian deity of the family as well as 
the dead ancestors appear in dreams and give 
Warnings of the coming calamities.^ 

1 School Master, Ubhadanda, Ratnagiri. 
s School Master, Fonde, RatnSgiri. 
5 School Master, Pendur, Ratnagiri. 
' School Master, Ksilse, Ratnrigiri. 

2 School Master, Mitbav, Ratnagiri. 
^ School Master, Ibhrampur, Ratndgirit 
* School Master, Basani, Ratnagiri. 
8 School Master, Chauk, KoWba. 



The people of Poladpur in Die Kolah.i 
Distriet believe in dreams ; and ^vliun some ol' 
llicir deities appear in drean\s and give them 
advice or directions, tliey are careful to follow 
them. Sometimes even evil spirits appear in 
dreams, and advise the people to do certain 
tilings to avert calamities. People who liave 
faith in such spirits act according to their 
wishes, and if they fail to do so, trouble 
is sure to follow. i 

Tlie people of Klioiioli in tlie Kohiba 
District believe that if a person sees in a 
dream, the dead body of a near relative, it 
indicates tliat the person whose corpse was 
seen in the dream will live long.2 

At Birwadi in the Kolaba District it is 
believed that if a person sees a snalie in a 
dream, a son will be born to him; if he sees a 
hell, he is sure to get wealtli. If he sees gold, 
it is a sure sign of losing wealth. Again, if a 
person sees liimself taking his uieals in a dream, 
it indicates that his death is nigh at hand.'' 

At Malad in the Thana District, omens are 
derived from dreams. In case of bad dreams 
the god Vishnu is remembered, and the gods 
Shankar and Maruti are also worsliipped.^ 

At Belapur, wood, cowdung cakes and 
turbid water, if seen in dreams, foretell 
calamities. Wliite clothes, beautiful flowers, 
and food containing sweetuicat are considered 

At Murbad in Ihe Thana District it is 
believed that all black things, and white tliuigs 
such as ashes, are inauspicious when seen 
in dreams, but a black cow, white flowers, 
and pearls are auspicious. Considering the 
four parts of the night, tlie dreams that occur 
in the first part ))rove effective witliin one 
year, that of the second part witliin six months, 
that of the third within three months, and of 

the fourth witliin one monlli, .ind those caused 
at da\ break are realized immediately.'^ 

At Kolhapur, dreams are believed to be 
caused through some mental derangement or 
bodily disorder. It is customary to derive 
omens from dreams, but tlieir nature greatly 
depends U))on the different times at which 
these dreams occur. The dreams caused in 
the latter part of the night, '. e. just before 
dajbreak, are believed to come true.' 

At Ubluidanda in tlie ^'engurla taluka it is 
believed that the soul of a person leaves the 
body temporarily during his sleep I hence it 
is said that no changes or marks of colour, etc. 
should be made on the body of a person during 
sleep, because it is believed that, while 
returning, the soul identifies the body, and if 
it is satisfied with tlie marks of the body it 
enters it; otherwise it might not return.* 

At Adivare it is believed that only Hindu 
saints and ascetics, after deep and devout 
meditation, are ca]iable of ren;oving the soul 
from the body. It is believed that their souls 
go to heaven during that period and return at 
pleasure. At present there are no such sadhus 
in the district.^ 

Many Hindus in the Ratnagiri District 
believe that the suul goes to drink water at 
night, and therefore keep a pot filled with 
water at their sleeping placc.^" 

The people of Chaul in the Kolaba District 
do not consider it possible ordinarily for the 
.soul to leave the body, but they stale that the 
Swami of Alandi, who died in or about the year 
1886, used to remove liis soul frorn the body 
by means of Yoga.''^''- 

At Kolhapur, it is believed that the soul 
leaves the body temporarily at nia;ht wlien a 
person is asleep. ^- 

' School Master, I'oUidpur, Kolaba. 
3 School Master, Birwadi. Kolaba. 
5 School Master, Belupur, Thana. 
f Rao Saheb Shelke, Kolhapur. 

School Master, Adivare, Ratn'.giri. 
" School Master, Chaul, Koldba. 

- School Master, Khopoli, Kolaba. 

* School Master. Malad, Thana. 

« School Master, Bhuwan, Murbad, Thilna. 

' School Master, Ubhadiinda, Ratnagiri. 

11 School Master, Kalshe, Ratndgiri. 

■J Rdo Siiheb Shelke. 



At Bankavali in the Dapoli taluka, it is 
believed tliat gliosis or evil spirits have the 
form of a human being, but their feet are 
turned backwards. TJicy can assume any 
form tliey choose. Their character is ordinarily 
to trouble the people, but when satisfied they 
are said to prove friendly. The following 
story is narrated of a person who went to 
reside in one of the villages of tlie Koiikan. 
His wife was first attacked by a ghost called 
Girha. Tlie Girha troubled him much by 
playing niiscliief in liis house, vis: by taking 
away eatables or by mixing dirt in his food. 
iVt night he used to divest the couple of their 
clothes, and on one occasion an ornament was 
removed bv the spirit from tlie person of the 
wife. Tired of tliese annoyances, the man left 
the village and went to reside at a distance, 
wlien, to the astonisliment of the public, it 
Iiapptned that tiie ornament wJiich was lost at 
the old village was restored to the man's wife 
while slie was asleep in the new village, and 
nobody knew wlio brouglit it there. All this 
was believed to be the work of the Girha. ^ 

At Ubhiidanda in tiie Vengurla taluka 
people believe that a BInit is fierce in aspect 
and very troublesome, but when its wishes are 
coraplied with, it becomes harmless. The 
Bhuts reside in jungles, burial or cremation 
grounds, old trees, sacred groves and deserted 
iiouses. They assume all sorts of shapes and 
forms. Sometimes they appear verj- tall, and 
they can instantly assume the shape of a dog, 
a cat, a tiger, or any other animal. Some 
ghosts are even seen fishing on the banks of . 
rivers,* | 

At Mitbav in the Devgad taluka it is 
believed that the souls of those who die with 
their wishes unfulfilled take the form of a 
Bhut. They enter tlie bodies of people. 
Any woman who is attacked by the Bhut of a 

1 Scliool Mas'er. Bankavali, Ratnagiii. 
' School Master, Mitbav, Ratnagiri. 
3 School Master, Naringre, Ratniigiri. 
' School Monster, Vijayadurg, Ratnngiri. 

j Pir becomes able to speak in the Hindi langu- 
I age although it may not be her mother tongue. 
I WJien a cliild or a person is suffering from the 
attacks of a spirit, incense is burnt, and it at 
once begins to tell the whereabouts of the 
spirit and the reason why tlie person has been 
attacked. He is then asked to state wliat he 
wants, and wlien the things which tlie spirit 
wants are offered, it goes away." Spirits are 
generally invisible. 

The spirits that belong to the class of malig- 
nant Bliiifs .ire of a ferocious appearance; 
but thost tiiat belong to the class of friendly 
Bhuts possess bodies like human beings.'* 

At Naringre in the Devgad taluka, it is 
believed that spirits are cruel by nature and 
have no shadow, tliat they are capable of taking 
any form they like, and can perform miracles. ^"^ 
At Pendur it is believed that Bhuts eat 
cliillies, and that they do not speak with human 
beings. Spirits are said to renjove and con- 
ceal their victims for a certain period of 
time.'' At Vi.jayadurg, a Bhut is considered 
to be of ii:ean character. People i)erforni 
certain rites to bring it under subjection. 
Their actions are always contrary to nature. 
Wlien a person begins to cry, dance, to eat 
forbidden things etc. he is said lo be attacked 
by a Bhut, ^^'llell tliere is enmity bet- 
ween two persons, tlie one who dies first 
becomes a samhandh and troubles his living^ 
enemy." At Basani, tlicre is a belief that 
there are two kinds of spirits. Some aim at 
the welfare of the people, and others are 
always troublesome. As they have no regular 
form they cannot easily be recognised. Thev 
can change their forms at any time.^ 

The character of a Bhut is to Irouble 
people and to take revenge on an old enemy, 
A person attacked by a sjjirit speaks 
incoherently and acts like a mad man. In sucli 
cases the leaves of the herb satap are used. 

- School Master, Ubhadiinda, Ratnagiri 

* School Master Ibhrampur, Ratnagiri. 
(^ School Master, Pendiir, Ratnagiri. 

* Schcol Master, Basani, Raln.iairi. 



The leaves are pounded and put under the it is said tliat tlie cow wliieh is given to a Brah- 
patient's nose. In a few minutes, tlie person uian while performing tl>e funeral rites of a 
who is possessed h\ the spirit begins to dead person helps liim to reach heaven. He gets 
speak. 1 tliere by catching hold of her tail. There are 
The people of Cliauk in Uie Kolaba District three paths to Hie other world. Tliey are 
believe that the main function of a B/J« Ms to ' Bhaktimdrga, Kannamdrga^ and Yogamdrga. 
frighten people, ti)i)( -it tliem, and to make them ; The Kannumdrga is believed to be superior to 
perform unpleasant tasks and thereby to obtain all.* At Miilad, a belief pievails that the patli 
food from tlieiii.- At Poladpiir it is believed to the other world is tlirougli the Himalayas, 
that if a person is able to bring a Bhiil inider While going through the mountains of the 
]iis control lie can make it do every kind of ' Himalayas, souls find happiness or sorrow- 
work for Iiimself." The people of Akslii believe ' according to their actions in life-time. The 
that kindling fire without any reason and \ people also believe that the soul returns every 
throwing stones at certain houses are the main month on the date of the man's deatli to accept 

functions of Bhitls.* Al Vavaslii in the Pen 
taluka, it is believed that BJiuts^ while walking, 
never touch the eartji but always move through 
the air, and that they have no shadow." The 
old nicn of Sliirgaum in the Mahini tahika 
advise young children not to respond to the call 
of anybody at niglit unless the person calling 
is an acquaintance. For such calls are some- 
times those of an evil spirit.' 

Kdgvds i. e. cooked I'ood given to the manes, 
and reaches heaven at tlie end of one year.'-' 
At Dahigaum in the Murbad taluka, it is 
customary among the Hindus to smear with 
cow dung the place from which a dead body has 
been removed to the burning ground. The 
place is then covered with rice flour, and is 
hidden under a basket, an oil-Limp being kept, 
burning near by. The persons ■\\ho aeconipany 

In the Kolhapur District, it is believed that ' tlie corpse return home to look at the lamp, and 

the character of a Bhjit is like that of a human 
being. When a person is attacked by a spirit, 
a great change is observed in his language and 
actions. He begins to speak in the language 
of the Bhut by which he is attacked. If the 
ghost is of the female sex, the person speaks the 
language of females. It is believed that the 
souls of those who have been murdered or tor- 
tured assume the form of a spirit known as 
Samhandh^ and trouble the murderer or the 
torturer, by entering his body. It is said that in 
some cases the spirit does not leave the body of 

it is believed that the soul of the deceased will 
pass to any creature or species of which 
footprints are seen on the rice flour. i" 

At Kolhapur it is believed that the soul of a 
person after death attains that slate to which 
he aspires at the last moiiRiit before his death. 
Virtuous persons wlio die w-ithout any desire 
reach heaven and remain there in the form of 
the stars, where they are believed to enjoy the 
happiness of heaven. Soiiie of them are sent 
to this world when they wish to return. Sinners 
are said to reach lull in consequence of tlieir 

such a person till he dies, thus exacting revenge misdeeds, but some remain in this world in the 
for his past misdeeds.'' In Khopoli in Ratnagiri form of Binds }'^ 

1 School Master, Chawl, Koliiba, 
3 Scliool Master, Poliidpur, KoUiba. 
5 School Master, Vavashi, Kolaba. 
f Riio Silheb Shelke, Kolhapur. 
' School Master, MaUid, Thana. 

- School Master, Chauk, Kolaba. 
•1 School Master. Akshi, Kolaba. 
G School Master, Shirgaum, Thana. 
6 School Master, Khopoli, Kolaba. 
10 School Master, Dahigaon, Thiina. 

n RSo Saheb Shelke.Kolhilpiu- 



The people of Achare in the Malwan taluka 
believe tliat the souls of persons who die by 
accident return to the same caste, and have to 
remain there till the expiry of an appointed 

The people of Chauk believe that persons 
dying a sudden or violent death leave wishes 
unfulfilled, and are therefore compelled to 
remain in tiiis world in the form of Bhuts.- 

At Rai in the Salsette taluka it is believed 
that the souls of those dying a sudden or violent 
death attain salvation according to their deeds 
in lifetime, but it is a current belief that those 
committing suicide take the form of a ghost, 
and those who die on battlefields attain eternal 

At Kolhapur, it is believed that the souls of 
those who die violent deatlis do not attain 
salvation, but are turned into ghosts. ■• 

The people of Ubh.'idanda in tlie Vtngurla 
taluka believe that Bhuts do not possess 
visible human forms. They can assume any 
shapes tliey like, but there is a conunon belief 
tliat the hands and feet of Bhuts are always 
turned backwards.' 

Tlie most favourable times for spirits to 
t'nter Imman bodies are midday, midnight and 
twilight." Women in delivery as well as 
those in their menses are most liable to be 
attacked by spirits.^ It is generally believed 
-that persons adorned with ornaments are 
attacked by spirits, especially in cases of 
women and children. Again, a common belief 
prevails in the Konkan that persons, and 
particularly ladies, decked with flowers and 
orn/iments are more liable to be attacked by 
spirits than others.*' The people of Fonda 
are of opinion that spirits generally enter and 
leave human bodies through the organ of 

hearing, while the people of Naringre hold 
that the hair is the best way for spirits to 
enter. 'J The residents of IbJirampur state 
that the mouth and the nose are the favourite 
channels for spirits entering human bodies.i* 
At Mitbav it is believed that spirits attack 
people in the throat, and generally only those 
persons who are uncleanly in their habits are 
liable to be attacked. There are no special 
ways for entering Jmman bodies." At Chaul a 
belief prevails that spirits enter the body 
when a person is suffering fiom any disease or 
when he is frightened. ^2 

In the Konkan, people attempt to find good 
or bad omens in sneezing. It depends upon the 
time and the position or standing of the person 
who sneezes. If a sick person sneezes it is 
presumed that he will recover from his illness 
witliin a very short period, but if the sneezing 
is caused by the use of tobacco or snuff, no good 
or bad omens are drawn.^* Sneezing at the 
time of conversation or when contemplating any 
particular task or business is held to be 
inauspicious. Hence if anybody sneezes at 
the beginning of a task, or at the time of 
starting out on any sucli task, the lime is 
unfavourable. Yawning is said to be caused 
by a relative or friend remembering the person 
who yawns. ^* In ancient times happiness and 
calamities were foretold by a voice from the 
sky, and in modern days they are expressed by 
sneezing. People have much faith in sneezing, 
and often inquire whether it is a good or bad 
omen to sneeze at the beginning of any work or 
undertaking. ^5 

If a man sneezes with his face towards the 
west, it is considered ausiiicious. If a man 
sneezes while contemplating any task or busi- 
ness, the sneezing is considered inausj^icious. 

1 School Master, Achare, Ratnagiri. 

3 School Master, Rai, Thdna, 

5 School Master, Ubhadanda, Ratnagiri. 

' School Master, Rai, Thana. 

' S ;hool Master, Fonde, Ratnagiri. 
11 School Master, Mitbav, Ratnagiri. 
13 School Master, Pendur, Ratnagiri. 

2 School Master, Chauk, Koldba. 

* Rao Saheb Shelke, Kolhapur. 

' School Master, Anjarle, Ratnagiri. 

' School Master, Bandivade, Ratnagiri. 
1" School Master, Ibhrampur, Ratnagiri. 
12 School Master, Chawl, Kolaba. 
11 School Master, Ubhadanda, Ratnagiri. 

15 School Master, Bandivade, Ratnagiri. 



Sneezing at the time ol" taking food i. e, while 
at meals, while sleeping, i.nd while silting on a 
praying earpet is considered auspieioiis. Sneez- 
ing with one's I'aee turned towards the nortli, 
the south, and the east is also unlucky.^ 

In tlie case of Bhagats and exorcists yawn- 
ing is considered to indicate that the disease 
will disappear. - 

In tlie Konkan it is believed that sneezing and 
yawning indicate the call of death, and therefore 
it is customary among the Hindus to snap the 
thumb and the middle finger at the time of 
yawning, and to repeat the words Shaianjiva 
i. e. Live for liundred years, at the time of 
sneezing,^ Sneeziug on a thresliold is believ- 
ed to forebode evil.^ 

At Kolhapur, people believe that sneezing 
and 3-awuing forebode evil, and the practice is 
to repeat the following words at the time of 
sneezing and yawning, viz, Shatanjiva i_ e. Live 
a hundred years, and also to repeat the name of 
lidm^ while snapping the thumb and finger 
(chutaki). In the case of a person suffering 
from a serious illness, sneezing is supposed 
to indicate a cure. If a woman sneezes while 
a man speaks, it is lucky, and if a man sneezes 
it is unlucky. The reverse is the case in 
respect of females.*'' 

In the Konkan, Riikshasas, or malevolent 
spirits, are believed to be very cruel. These 
evil spirits are held in great fear, and people 
try to avoid giving them offence. It is sup- 
posed that to cause displeasure to these demons 
may bring about death. Willi a view to pro- 
pitiate them, offerings of cocks and goats are 
made to them every year regularly on fixed 
days.'' If a woman gives birth to a child which 
is extraordinary or horrible in size and 

1 School Master, Khopoli, Kolaba. 
3 School Master. Vavanje, Koldba. 
5 Rho Saheb SI elke, Kolhapur. 
1 Schoul Master, Tonde, Ratnagiri. 
' School Master, Khopoli, Kolal a. 
'' School Master, Anjarle, Ratnagiri, 

appearance, it is believed lo be a deuion 
reborn. Such a child is supposed to bring 
bad luck to the family.'^ TJie Konkan people 
believe that in former days Rakshasas, or 
malevolent demons, used to be tall, ugly, black, 
with long and laose hair, big teeth, and with 
their foreheads painted with red had, or 
shendur. They could assume any form they 
liked, were powerful, and could fly in the air. 
They were fond of human fltsh.'^ The 
people of KhoiJoli believe that Kluivis is the 
ghost of an African Sidhi^ This spirit is 
very malevolent, and tsorcisls find it very 
difficult to bring it under control. A strong 
belief prevails in the Konkan districis that 
those attacked by the spirits of non-Hindus 
are beyond cure.'' 

According to the belief of the people in the 
Kollii'ipur District, Brahma Rdkshasa is one of 
the most powerful spirits. It takes up its 
abode in the sacred Pipal tree, and when it 
attacks a person, little hope is cnttrtaiiitd oi' 
his delivery from its grasp. i" 

The following are the principal mali- 
gnant spirits of the Konkan. 

(1) Vetal, (2) Brahuiagraha, (: ) Sam- 
bandhas, (4) Devachar, (5) Munja, (6) Kha- 
vis, (7) Girha, (8) Chetak, (9) Zoting, 
(10) Vir, (11) Chcda, (12) Mhasoba, (13) 
Ji'ikhin or Alwant, (14) Lavsant, and (15) H:i- 

(1) VetiU is believed to be the King of 
Spirits. 1^ Vetal is considered to be a deity 
and not an evil spirit. It enters into the 
body of an exorcist and helps him to drive 
away other evil spirits. ^^ 

(2) Brahmagraha is the ghost of a Br;'ih- 
man well versed in the Fedas^ but who is ovci 
proud of his education.^'' 

* School Master, Cliawl, Koldba. 

* School Master, Unil)ergaon, Thilna. 

" School Master, UbhilJiindn, Kaln.igiri. 

' School Master, Adivan, Ratr;igiri. 
l" Riio Shheb Sliell:e, Kolhapur. 
" School Master, Shirgacn, Thana. 

'2 School Master, Ubhdddnda, Ratnagiri. 



(3) Sambandlia is tlie spirit of a person 
wlio dies witliout an heir, and whose funeral 
rites have not been performed by any member 
of liis family. It troubles the members of 
the family, but when invoked through a Blia- 
gat it becomes harmless, and even favour- 
able to tho family. 1 It is the spirit of a 
covetous person or a sanyasi wlio dies with 
liis desires unfulfilled.- It does not allow 
anybody to enjoy his wealtli, and takes 
revenge on an enemy till death ensues. It 
IiaiMits trees, wells and unoccupied houses.'' 

(4) Devacluir is tlie spirit of a Shudra who 
dies after his marriage.* These (Devachar) 
spirits are said to reside on the four sides of a 
village. The spirits which reside in burial 
or cremation grounds, on river banks, and in 
old trees are said to be subordinate to these. 
Coc^anuts, plantains, sugar, cocks and goats 
must be given annuallj' to gain their favour.-'' 

(5) Munja is the spirit of a Bralnnan boy 
who dies inuiiediately after his thread ceremony, 
but before the final ceremony called Sod-mtinj 
is complete. It does not greatly affect its 
victim but simply frightens. When it attacks, 
it is difficult to drive out. It is cast out only 
when the patient makes a pilgrimage to a holy 
shrine." It resides in a Pipal tree or in a well. 

(6) Kliavis is the spirit of a Musalman or 
a non-Hindu.^ It is also the spirit of a Mahar 
or a Mang.^ 

(7) Girha is the ghost of a person who 
dies by drowning, or of a murdered person.^ 
Girha is not very powerful, and obeys the orders 
of the exorcists. It only frightens and troubles 
people.^" It lives by the water side, and 

1 R;i 1 Saheb Shelke, Kolhapur. 
3 School Master Chauk, KoUiba. 
5 School Master, Khopoli, Koliiba. 
" R;io Saheb Shelke, Kolhapur. 
9 School Master, Khopoli, Kolaba. 
" School Master, Anjarle, RatnAgiri. 
1^ Rao Saheb Shelke, Kolhapur. 
iJ School Mister, Basani, Ratn:igiri. 
T School Master, Anjarle, Ratnigiri. 

deceives persons at night by caling them by 
their names and leading them into false paths. 
It often troubles people while crossing rivers or 
creeks at night, and leads tlicm to places where 
the water is very deep. It is said tiiat the 
spirit Girha becomes the regular slave of a 
person who takes possession of the hair of its 
head, and gives him anything that lie requires. 
It requests the person to return its hair, but 
this should not be given under any circum- 
stances. For, if the Girha gets back its hair 
all sorts of misfortunes will befall the riian.^^ 

(8) Chetak is the gJiost of a person of 
the Kunbi or Shudra caste.^- This spirit is 
also known as Ddv. 

(y) Zoting is the ghost of a man belonging 
to the Kharvi or Koli caste^" It is also said 
to be the ghost of a Musalman.^* 

(10) Vir is the gliost of an unmarried 
Person belonging to tlie Ksiiatriya coni- 
munity,^^' It is also said lo be the ghost of a 
Rajpuit or a Purbhaya (Pardeshi.) 

(11) Cheda is the ghost of an unmarried 
Mahar. It resides on mountains, in jimgles^ 
and the outskirts of tlie village.*'' Cheda 
attacks domestic animals. It Jiaunls fields and 
farms, and resides at public places wJiltc the 
IIoU fires are annually kindled. To avoid 
being troubled by it, people offer annual 
sacrifices of fowls and goats. ^^ 

(12) Mhasoba is the lord of the ghosts, 
and is equal in might to Velal.*'* 

(13) Jakhin or Alwant. Jakhin is the 
o-host of a woman who has a husband alive. 


Alwant is believed to be the spirit of a woman 
dying at childbirth or during her menses. 

' School Master, Basani, Ratn^giri. 

4 School Master, Ubhadilndi, Katii^giri. 

« School Master, Anjarle, Katnjigiri. 

8 School Master, Chowl, Kolaba. 
W School Master, Shirgaon, Ti ana. 
12 School Master, Bankavli, Ratniigiri. 
Il School Master. Basani, Ratn^giri. 
16 School Master, Shirgaon, Thiina. 
'8 School Master, Shirgaon, Th^na. 



It resides at l) or eremation grounds. 
Persons attacked by tliis spirit arc taken to 
Narsoba's Wadi or Gangapur, wliich are 
■celebrated as slirines Tor tiic renios-al of 
malignant spirits. ^ 

(1+) Lavsat is the ghost of a widow. It 
generally resides in burial and burning 
grounds, and attacks do)uestic animals and 
their calves. It is also said to tear clotJies and | 
•«;at corpses. - 

( 1 5) Hadal or Hfdili is the ghost of a 
woman who dies within ten days of childbirth 
or during her menses. It is supposed to be 
an evil .spirit, but it can be kept in cheek by the 
use of a cane. It attacks all sorts of persons, 
but leaves them as soon as it is beaten." 

Tiiis spirit is also known as Dalcan in the 
Kolliapur district.-* Satavi is the ghost of a 
■womin. It troubles women in childbirth, and 
kills their children on tlie 5th or 6th day after 
their birth.' Sliakini is the ghost of an 
iinmarried girl. Talkhamba is the ghost of 
an unmarried Shudra or a person from the 
low castes." The people ofVijayadrug believe 
that one who hates and troubles the IJrahmans 
.and speaks ill of their religious duties becomes 
a Brahma Samhandlm after deatli." At Polad- 
pur in the Kolaba District the ghost Bdpa is 
represented by a stone painted witli red lead 
and oil and jjlaeed at the boundary of a field. 
It is the guardian of the field, and protects the 
owners' interests. Offerings are made to it 
annualh'. If the annual offerings are neglect- 
ed, it troubles tiie owner of the field. It also 
troubles others when disturbed.* 

Tlie spirits known as Kalkdiche Bhut and 
Bahirohache Bhut are not troublesouie. When 

they favour any person, he enjoys health and 
happiness for a period of twelve years. But 
after that period he is ruined.* In addition to 
the varieties of malignant spirits already des- 
cribed, the following spirits are known at 
Sliirgaon in the M/ihiiu taluka of the Thana 
District. They an — Ilirnui, If't'ighoha^ Asan'm^ 
Gangnd^ Saildfiniul Chaitannadya, The spirit 
known as Ilinva requires the offerings of a 
bow and an arrow, hhang^ bdjri bread, and a 
chatni of garlic. TJic JVaghoba haunts jungles 
and troubles domestic animals. Coeoanuls and 
lamps of ghi are offered to it. Asard.i are the 
deities that dwell in water. Tliey infest the 
wells and ponds, and attack women and ehildrem 
at noon time and in tile evening. Red lead, 
coeoanuts, flowers, parched rice {Idhi/ii) and 
ndddpiidi are given to theni.^" 

At Ibhrampur in the Ralnagiri District it 
is said tliat the evil spirit ''oting goes about 
headless. ^^ 

The people of Medhe in the Rolie taluka 
believe that tlie spirit known as Girha^ which 
resides in water, goes about lieadless.^- 

At Sliirgaon in the Malum taluka it is belie- 
ved tiiat the spirit Hirtva goes about headless. 
It troubles human beings and animals. The sea 
and the jungle are its places of abode. To 
avoid being trouibled by it, bhdn.g^ coeoanuts, 
fowls are given to it.^* 

The (leople of Daliigauii in tlie Murbad 
taluka believe that the Bhut known as Prrsa 
goes about headless. ^^ 

Some evil spirits haunt trees such as the 
Pipal^ Bdbhul and Adulsa_ Some have their 
haunts on a public road where three streets 
meet, or in a dirty place, some haunt old 
houses, and the rest prefer to reside in 
burial and burning grounds.^-'' 

' School Master, Ubhudiinda, Ratnilgiri. 

' School Master, Khopol, Kolaba. 

5 School Master, Chauk, Kol.Sba. 

' School Master, VijayadurK, Ratmigiri. 

' School Master, Khoi)oIi, Kolaba. 

" School Master, Ibhrampiir, Ratniigiri. 

■' School Master, ShirgaoDj Thiina. 

2 School Master, Chauk, Kohiba. 

* Rao Saheb Shelke, Kolhapur. 

•■ School Master, Basani, Katnjigiri. 

* School Master, I'dliidpiir. Kolaba. 
" School Master, Sliirgaon, Thiina 
'■■' School Master, Medlip, Knlaba. 

" School Master, Iiahigaon, Thiiiia. 

Kiio Saheb Shelke, Kolhapur 



Many spirits dwell in burial or cremation 
grounds. Among them are Vetal, Jiikliin, 
Khavis, Kiiaprya, Zoting, Dav, Girlia, .Uavat 
and Lavsat.^ 

The spirits Munja and Sambandh are said 
to reside near liouses and old trees that pro- 
duce sweet smelling flowers. The spirits Dev- 
char and Clialegat are said to reside at tlie 
four corners or the boundary of a village. - 

It is believed that all kinds of spirits 
assemble at night at the funeral ground when 
a body is burnt or buried.^ 

The evil spirits known as KJiavis, Zoting and 
Kafri are said to dwell on mountains and in 
jungles ; wliile the others named Sambandha^ 
Jdkhin^ Hadal and Ldvsat are said to reside 
on trees.* 

Munja resides in the Pipal tree. Sambandha 
dwells in the Banyan, Pipal and Umbar trees. 
It is supposed to be a guardian of buried 

At Murbad in the Thana District, it is 
believed tliat an evil spirit known as Hadal 
infests the tamarind trees.'' 

In the Kolh-apur District it is believed that 
the gliosts of persons dying on battlefields 
infest mountains and jungles, and the evil 
spirit known as Sambandh infests trees.^ 

(jencrally in the Konkan, and specially in 
the Ratnagiri District, young motliers and 
their children are supposed to be liable to the 
attacks of the spirits Saldvi, Avagat^ Alavanf^ 
Jdkhin, Devchdr and Chdlegat^^ 

At Khopoli in the Kolaba District it is 
believed that a yoimg mother and lier child 
are generally attacked by tlie spirit of the 
dead wife of her husband, or by a Hadal or 
Ldvsat^ The spirit that attacks a woman 

during her childbirth is ditticult to drive out. 
The spirits are always afraid of cleanliness, 
and therefore, wLere there is clcanlhicss, there 
is very little fear of their iittacks^. 

The people of Sliirgaon believe that the 
fiend known as Hedli attacks a young mother 
and her child. The B/i«'^a, or the sorcerer, 
makes use of his cane and of the dirtj' incense 
known as Nurhya Uda^ and compels her to 
speak and to ask for what she wants. Some- 
times she speaks and asks for the things 
required. Boiled rice and curds, and oil with 
red lead are given to her. When she leaves 
the body, the person becomes insensible for 
a short time.^*' 

The fiend known as Hadal ^ and otlier evil 
spirits of the female sex, generally attack 
a yomig mother and lier child. They are 
generally attacked by these fiends on a public 
cross road where three roads meet, or under a 
Bdbhul tree, and also at wells. ^^ 

At Ubhadanda in the Vengurla taluka it is 
believed that those who are killed by tigers 
or other wild beasts are born as kings in the 
next generation. ^^2 q,j tjjg other hand the 
people of Bankavli are of opinion that those 
who suffer death at the hands of tigers and 
other wild beasts are turned into spirits. The 
spirit of a person killed by a tiger is called 
V dghvir .'^'■^ 

At Achare it is believed that persons killed 
by lions and tigers attain salvation, while 
those killed by inferior beasts go to hell.^* 

The people of Ibhrampur believe that 
unmarried persons killed by tigers or other 
wild beasts take tlie form of a ghost. Males 
become Girhas and females become Jdkhins 
and Ldvsats.^^ 

1 School Master, Mitbav, Ratnagiri. 

' School Master, Ibhrampur, Ratnagiri. 

5 Scliool Mister, Cliauk, Kolaba. 

^ Rao Saheb Sheike, Kolhilpur. 

' School Master, Khopoli, KoUilja. 

'1 R&o S.lheb Sheike, Kolhiipur. 

W School Master, Bankavli, Ratnagiri. 

1' School Master, 

2 School Master, Fonde, Ratnagiri. 
i School Master, Ibhrampur, Ratnagiri. 
6 School Master, Murbad, Thana. 
8 School Master, Achare, Ratnagiri. 
10 School Mister, Shirgaon, Thana. 
'2 School Master, Ubhadanda, Ratnagiri. 
1* School Master, Achare, Ratnagiri. 
Ibhrampur, Ratnagiri. 



At Pendur it is believed persons killed 
by tigers and otlier wild beasts become 
Brahma lidkshiasa. Tlic same form is assum- 
ed by those who dii- by accident. A nmrdcied 
man becomes a Devachiir.^ 

In the District of KoUiapur a belief pre- 
vails that the spirits of those killed by tigers 
or other wild beasts assume the form of 
ghosts. It is also believed tliat persons wlio 
die before they are married do not attain 
salvation, and therefore it is considered in- 
auspicious among the Hindus to remain 
unmarried. TJiis is the real reason wliy the 
majority of the Hindus marry llieir children 
at an early age.^ 

The ghost of a woman dying in childbirth 
or during her menses assumes Uie form of 
Alrvant. For the purpose of preventing the 
dead woman turning into a ghost the following 
device is ado))ted. The corpse, instead of being 
burnt as usual, is buried underground, and four 
iron nails are fixed at the four corners of the 
spot on wliicli the body is buried, and plants 
liearing red flowers are planted thereon.-" 

At Bankavli it is believed that the ghost of 
a woman dying in childbirta or during her 
menses assumes the form of Jnlchin, while the 
people of the Kolhapur District believe that it 
assumes the form of Uadal .* 

The special precautions tliat a father has 
to take at the birth of a child are: — 

To arrange for a suitable place or a room 
provided with the materials required for the 

A knife or some other sharp weapon is kept 
under the bed of the woman in order that the 
mother and her cliild may not be attacked by 
a spirit.'' 

Tile cliief reason for ensuring tlie correct 
moment for tlie birth is that, if the birth takes 
place at an unlucky liour, special rites are 
necessary for averting the evil effects. These 
rites consist in the recitation of certain Jioly 
man Iras and in giving presents of monej', 
sessauumi, jagri^ clarified butter, etc., to the 
Brahuians and alms to the poor.'" 

At Medhe in the Rohe taluka, it is customary 
for the father to throw a stone in a well, a pond, 
or a river at the birth of his .son, .md then to 
look at the face of tlie child." 

An owl is considered to be a bird of such 
evil repute that, in all parts of tlie Konkan, it 
is considered necessary to ))erforni expiatory 
rites when an owl perches on tlie roof. If 
these rites are not performed, it is firmly 
believed that some evil will befall tlie members 
of the family. Various omens are drawn from 
the erics of the bird Piiiglo, and these cries 
are known as Kilbil, CJiilhil and Khit KMtJ^ 
If an owl sits on the roof of a house, it is 
a sure sign of coming death to a member of 
the family.'' 

At Devgad in the Ratnagiri District the 
sound of a bat or an owl is considered 
inauspicious, and indicates the death of a sick 
person in the house. '^'^ 

At Cliaiik an owl is .said to iiave some 

occasion, and to ensure the correct moment for | connection with spirits. Its sound at night 
the birth of the child. No person other than indicates the approaching death of a sick 

.•I midwife is allowed to enter the room for the 
first ten days. A pot is kept filled with water 
and a twig of tlu' «"" tree in the entrance 
of the house, and :d\ persons entering the 
hoiuse have to wash their feet with this water. 

person in the house. One variety of the owl 
called the jnngia is supposed to foretell future 
events by its movements and cries, while tlie 
bat is considered an inauspicious bird, and 
its appearance forebodes coming evil.^^ 

1 School Master, Pendur, Halnt'igiri. 

' Scliool Master, UblK'ul.lnda, Ratnagiri. 

5 Riio S.-iheb Slielke, Kolh.ipiir. 

^ School Master, Medhe, Kohiha. 

' School Master, .\divare, ttatii'igiri. 

2 Rao Siiheb Shelke. Kolhiipur. 

* School Master, Bankavli, Itatmigiri. 
'■ School Master, Pendur, Ratnugiri. 

3 School Master, Shirgaon, Th;ina. 
'" School Master, Devgad, Ratnagiri. 

'• School Master, Cbauk, Kclaba. 



At Umbergaon people do not throw stones 
at an owl. For it is considered that the owl 
might sit and rub the stone, and that the 
person tlirowing it will become weak and 
wasted as the stone wears away.^ 

The people of Kolhapur do not believe lliat 
tliere is anv connection between the bat or owl 
and the spirits of the dead, but tlie_v believe 
that, if an owl cries out in the evening or at 
night, it indicates the death of a sick person in 
the family. This applies also to the sound 
of a single pingla^ but the sound of a pair of 
pinglas is considered auspicious. - 

It is generally believed that old unoccu- 
pied houses are haunted by evil spirits. 
Persons who wish to inhabit such houses first 
perform the Vdstii shdnti ceremony, .and give 
a feast to Brahuians. In former times, in the 
districts that were ruled by the Portuguese, 
religious persecution prevai'ed. To escape 
from these persecutioas, people were compelled 
to leave their houses unprotected. Before 
leaving their houses, they used to bury their 
treasure in the ground, and on that spot 
a human being or an animal was sacrificed in 
order that the spirit of the dea'd should hover 
about the ))lace, and prevent strangers from 

The evil spirits wliich haunt ruins and guard 
buried treasures and old forts are known as 
Mahdpurush^ Khavis, Brahma Rdkshasa and 

If there bs any buried treasure in an old 
imoccupied house, the o^vner of the treasure 
remains there in the form of a ghost. If the 
treasure be near the temple of a deity, it is 
supposed to be under the guardiausliip of that 

At Vijayadurg it is believed that a person 
who builds a house in the days of his piospe- 
rity and does not survive to enjoy it, becomes 
a Sambandh. He remains in that house iu the 
form of a ghost, and troubles every one who 
comes to stay there, excepting the members of 
Iiis family. A man wlio buries his treasure 
undergroimd becomes a ghost after death, 
comes back to watch his treasure, and troubles 
those who try to remove it.** 

Unoccupied liouses are generally haunted 
by e\il spirits. At certain forts in the Konkan 
where battles were fought, the souls of those 
slain in the battles are said to liave assumed 
the forms of spirits, and to keep a watch over 
the forls."^ 

In the Kolhapur District there is a village 
Nigve beyond the river Panch Ganga at 
a distance of three miles from Kolhapur, where 
the soul of a person named Appaji Kulkarni 
has assumed llie form of a Sajithandh and 
guards the buried treasures in his house. 
When anybody tries to dig up the buried monej-, 
the ghost enters the bod\- of his daughter-in-law 
and begins to dance and cry out loudly, and 
does not allow any one to toueli his treasure. 
It is also said that he strikes the ground with 
his stick at night. Another similar instance 
is cited in the case of the village of Latvade 
in the Shirol Peta, where Bapujipant Kulkar- 
ni continues to guard his house after death. 
He does not allow anybody to live in the house, 
and if any one is bold enough to sleep there 
at niglit, the spirit of Bapuji appears and 
throws him out of tlie house. The house is 
therefore uninhabited at present. His wife 
has ado)3tcd a son, but he has to live in another 
village Vadange.s 

1 School Master, Umbergaon, Thana. 
' School Master, Ubhadanda, Ratnagiri. 
5 School Master, Pendur, Ratnagiri. 
' School Master, Poliidpur, Kolaba. 

' Riio Saheb Shelke, Kolhapur, 
* School Master, Adivare, Ratnagiri. 
6 School Master, Vijayadrug, Ratndgiri. 
' Rao Saheb Shelke, Kolhapur. 



Hindus geiurally believe in the eit'ects of 
the evil eye. If an accident befall any thing 
of value, or it undergoes any sudden change, 
it is said to be due to the effects of an evil 
eye. In order to escape from the influence 
of an evil eye, people begin the use of 
incantations and charms on a Sunday, 
Wednesday, or Tliursday and finish them 
on the third or the fifth day. Small children, 
domestic animals, and beautiful objects are 
generally liable to be affected by an evil 

The following are some of the methods 
of evading the effects of an evil eye. 

1st. — Dry chillies are waved round the 
body of the affected person and 
thrown into the fire, and if they do 
not thereupon make a loud noise, 
it is said that the effects of an 
evil eye are averted. 
2n(l. — Mustard seed and salt are waved 
round the face of a child and then 
thrown into the fire. 
3,(/_ — Alum is waved round the child and 
then tlirovvn into fire. The piece 
of alum thus thrown is sometimes 
believed to be changed into the form 
of a man or a woman. From this, 
conjectures are made as to tlie sex of 
the person by wh'ose evil eye the 
patient is affected. Tiie form or the 
figure is then broken by a toe of the 
left foot of tlie patient, and dry 
chillies, garlic, liair, rubbish from 
the house and salt are mixed in the 

alum powder. The mixture is 

waved round the patient three 

times and then thrown into fire. 

Meanwhile the sorcerer repeats the 

names of all persons, things and 

evil spirits suspected by him. After 

this performance has been repeated 

three times, the fire is deposited in 

a public place where three roads 


ilh. — If the evil ej'e is believed to be that 

of a ghost, the sorcerer mutters 

some words to himself, waves 

ashes round the affected child, and 

blows tliem in the air. 

5'/'. — The evil eye of a tiger is removed 

from an affected animal in the 

following manner. An oil lamp is 

burnt in the eye of a dead tiger 

and the lamp is waved round the 

animal by a Mahar. The Mahar 

is given a loaf prepared from eight 

kinds of grain. 

6'/'. — Copper amulets and black cotton 

strings charmed by a sorcerer arc 

also tied round the ncek nr .irnis of 

the patient. ^ 

When a child is to be removed from one 

village to another, rice is scattered at the 

boundary of the village, at the bridges, rivers, 

creeks, etc, that are crossed during the 

journey. Cocoanuts are waved round the child 

and thrown away at the boundary of the village 

and at places supposed to be haunted by 

ghosts. Before entering a house in a new 

village, a small quantity of boiled rice, bread^ 

1 School Master, Ubhiiddnda, Ratn;igiri. 



or grains of rice are waved round the child 
and thrown away. It is believed that, when 
black ointment is applied to the eyes, cheeks, 
or forehead of a child, there is no fear of its 
being affected by an evil eye. This also 
depends on the position of tlie stars at the 
birth of a child. If anybody sees a beautiful 
thing and praises it, there is a chance of its 
being affected by an evil eye. It is believed 
that children, animals, trees, and even wood 
and stones, are apt to be afl'ected by an evil 
eye. In order to avoid injury from an evil 
eye, cocoanut shells or a shoe are tied on a 
conspicuous part of a tree or a creeping plant, 
black beads known as Fajrabuttu are tied 
round tJie necks of children, and cowries and 
black beads are tied round the necks of animals. 
Even grown up persons are affected by an evil 
eye. Wiien a man is very ill or frequently be- 
comes unconscious, cocoanuts, fowls and boiled 
rice are waved round him and thrown away.^ 

When the effects of an evil eye cannot be 
removed by ordinary methods, the evil influence 
is said to have entered through the bones, 
' Hddi drusta padali,' In order to remove it 
people bring the bone of an animal in tlie 
evening, and after besmearing it with oil and 
turmeric powder, wash it in hot water. It 
is dressed in a yellow cloth, and black and 
red ointments are applied to it. It is then 
waved round the affected person, and tlirown 
away in some public place where three roads 
meet. * 

For evading the effects of an evil eye, 
salt, mustard seed, hair, garlic, dry leaves 
of onions, dry chillies, and seven small stones 
from the road are pat on the fire. The fire 
is then waved round the body of the affected 
person and thrown away. Charmed black 
cotton strings are turned over the burning 
incense and tied round the arm or the neck. 
Cliarmed ashes from the temples of certain 
deities are also applied to the forehead of 
tlie affected person.^ 

At Ibhrampur in the Ratnagiri District, it 
is believed tliat a person whose eyes hlave 
come under the influence of evil stars 
possesses the power of the evil eye. Ashes 
are taken on a mango leaf, and charmed 
with the mantras or incantations for an evil 
eye, and then they are applied to the forehead 
of the affected person.'* 

The people of Poladpur in the Kolaba District 
believe the effects of an evil eye to be as 
follows. A healthy child becomes sickly and 
cries, a man may suffer from indigestion or loss 
of appetite, a cow or a she-buffalo yielding 
plent}' of milk suddenly ceases to give milk 
or gives blood in place of it, a good image is 
disfigured or broken, and even stones are shat- 
tered to pieces by the effects of an evil eye. 

The following devices are used to ward 
off such evil effects. A black mark is 
made on the forehead of children. Black 
beads called Drustamani, and Fajrabuttu 
are tied round their necks. Marking nuts 
and cowries tied with a black thread are 
fastened round the necks of animals. A 
little black spot is marked on an image. 
A worn out shoe or a sandal is tied to the 
fruit-yielding trees. Salt and mustard seed 
are waved thrice round the face of a child 
repeating '' Ishta mishta honyd pdpinichi 
drushta " and thrown into the fire. Some 
people roll a cotton thread round a curry 
stone, wave it three times round the patient, 
and then put it into the fire ; if the thread 
burns, the evil eye is held to have been 
removed. If the evil eye be on tlie food, three 
morsels of food are first raised to th6 mouth, 
and then thrown into the fire. 'Sacred ashes 
are applied to trees and creeping plants 
to remove the effects of an evil eye.-'' 

The people of Khopoli in the Kolaba 
District believe that the evil eye can be 
diverted from living creatures only, and not 
from inanimate things such as a stone or an 
earthen image. Sacred ashes are applied 
to the forehead of the suffering child by 

' School Master, Mitbav, Ratnagiri. 
3 School Master, Achare, Ratnagiri. 

5 School Master, 

2 School Master, Anjarle, Ratnagiri. 
* School Master, Ibhrampur, Ratndgiri. 
Poladpur, Koldba. 



repeating the Ram raksha stoira^ /, e, the 
protecting praises of Rama, the seventli 1 
incarnation of \'ishnii. Amongr Brahnians. 
rice grains are waved thrice round the face 
of a child and put into water. The water is 
tlien thrown awav. Even flowers are waved 
round the faces of small children in the 
evening and thrown away,-"- 

At Cliauk in tlic Karjat taluka of the 
Kolaba District, some people wave the left 
shoe thrice round the body of tlie affected 
person for the purpose of evading tlie effects 
of an evil eye. A red hot iron bar is also 
cooled in water mixed with turmeric 
powder. 2 

At SJiirgaon in the Maliim taluka of the 
Tliana District water is drawn in a brass or 
a copper pot in the evenin"-, and turmeric 
powder, rice, and any other edible articles on 
■which the evil eye has fallen are put into it. 
Twentyone date leaves, each of them with 
a knot, are then waved round the body of the 
affected person and thrown into the water pot, 
burning coals being dropped into the mixture. 
The pot is then waved thrice round the body 
of the affected person, and kept in a corner 
of the bedroom for one night, witlli a basket, 
a broom, and a sandal or an old shoe placed 
on the top. It is tlicn thrown away in the 
morning in some public place where three 
roads meet. If the water becomes red, it is 
supposed that the evil eye has been 

The effects of an evil eye are sometimes 
visible on the face of a child in the form of 
small red pustules. The appearance of such 
pustules is called Chdk padane.'^ 

If a person is affected by an evil eye at the 
time of taking his meals, he loses his appetite. 
He also becomes weaker day by day. 
One of the modes of removing these evils is 
to wave fresh date leaves three times round 
the face of the affected person, and to throw 

them into water. Some people take water in 
a copper plate and extinguish in it burning 
sticks of the tamarind tree, after waving them 
round the body of the affected person.'^ 

At Kharbav in the Bassein taluka of the 
Thana District, five pieces of broken tiles 
are made red hot and put into water in which 
a little quantit}' of all the cooked food in the 
house has been mixed. Turmeric powder is 
also put into it. A pen knife or some other 
iron instrument is then turned five times 
in the water. A winnowing basket and a 
broom are waved thrice round the face of 
the affected person^ and placed over the water 

At Dahanu in the Thana District, two 
big stones, of which one has been waved 
round the face of a person affected by an 
evil eye, are struck one against the other. 
If the stone breaks, it is believed that the 
evil effect has been removed. Cowdung is 
mixed with water in a brass or a copper 
plate, and dust from a public road, hair, and 
burning black cotton cloth are put into 
another small vessel. This vessel is then 
waved round the person, and placed upside 
down over the mixture of cowdung. If 
it sticks to the brass plate, this is supjiosed 
to be due to the evil eye." 

The people of Kolhapur believe in the 
effects of an evil eye. A child suffering 
from an evil eye turns pale and thin, and 
suffers from headache. To avoid thefe 
effects, elderly women make a mark with lamp 
black on the face or brow of the child. 
Boiled rice and curds, and bread and oil 
are also jiassed round the face of a child, 
and thrown into a public road.^ 

Generallv, in the Konkan districts, oppro- 
brious names are given to children when they 
are sickly, always crying, and weak, or when 
they are short lived. These names are 

• School Master, Khopoli, Kolaba. 
' School Master, Shirgaon, Thana. 
^ School Master, Malad, Thana. 
' School Master, Daliiinu, Thiina. 

School Master, Chauk, Kolaba. 
School Master, Padghe, Thiina. 
School Master, Kharbav, Thana. 
Rao Siiheb Shelke, Kolhapur. 



Marya^ Rodya^ Kerya, etc. It is believed 
that children improve in health when called 
by such opprobrious uaiiies.^ 

Opprobrious names such as Dhondu^Kondu, 
Keni,aTe given to children in families in which 
the first children are shortli\ed. But their 
real names are different. The names of the 
wcllknown arithmetician Keru Nana Chhatre 
and liis son Kondopaiit Clihatre are examples 
of opprobrious names.- 

Among high class Hindus, the first son 
is not generally called by his real name, but 
by one of the opprobrious names given 
above. '^ 

Children are sometimes weighed with shoes 
or sandals, and also with cowdung. In some 
cases, their nostrils are bored, especially the 
right one.^ 

Hindus general!}- call their children by 
the names of their deities and ancestors, and 
they attribute the premature death of their 
children to their own misbehaviour towards 
such ancestors, or to their having abused 
them; the)' fear that such abuse or 
misbehaviour has offended the ancestors. 
To avoid their displeasure and the consequent 
death of their children, the people give 
opprobrious names to their next born such 
as Dagadya^ Dhondya, Gundya^ Dandya 
Kerya^ Ukirdya, Kondya, Lobhya^ etc. The 
custom of tattooing one side of the body of 
females also prevails in the KoliiapnrDistrict, 
especially in cases where the ciiildren in a 
family are shortlived.' 

In the Purdnas there are instances of males 
being transformed into females, and females 
into males. For example, the female Amba was 
transformed into a male called Shikhandi and 
the male Narad was transformed into a 
female. Arjuna, the third brother of the 
Pandavas is said to have changed his sex, and 
turned into Bruhannada.^ 

In the ShivUlamruta, a book pertaining to 
the god Shiva, in the chapter of Simantini, 
it has been described how a man was turned 
into a woman. ^ 

At Kolhapur, there are no instances known 
of a change of sex. The goddess Yallamma 
has a high reputation in this district for 
making a change in the habits and deportments 
of men and women, especially among low 
caste people. It is believed that the curse of 
this goddess has the power of destroying the 
virility of males, whereupon they behave like 
females. Many instances of this type can be 
seen at the fair of the goddess Yallamma.which 
is held in Mdrgashirsha ( December ); men 
dressed in women's clothes and vice versa are 
often seen at this fair.' 

In Western India, iron nails are generally 
used when any spirit is to be buried in the 
ground. Other metals, such as gold, silver, 
and copper, are sometimes offered to the ghosts. 
The blood of fowls and goats is also off'ered 
to them. When incense is burnt before a 
sorcerer, the spirit enters into his body. 
Water is charmed and sprinkled over the 
body of a person attacked by an evil spirit. 
Rice and udid grains are required for 
exorcising spirits. Red powder Pinjar, tur- 
meric powder, black ointment kdjal^ lemons, 
Narahya Wuda a kind of incense, betel-leaves, 
betelnuts, cocoannts, mango leaves, Nirgiidi 
leaves, and pieces of cloth are also used for 
the same purpose." 

Cane sticks are used by people as a protec- 
tion against evil spirits. A stick cut from 
the tree known as Pdndhri is also used as 
protection. Charmed black cotton strings are 
tied to the wrist, arm or neck. If a man is 
very much afraid of a ghost, he repeats the 
name of the monkey god Maruti or any other 
deity that may be favourable to his family.*" 

" School Master, Mitbav, Ratnagiri. 
' School Master, Bhayandar, Thaiia. 
5 Rao Saheb Shelke, Kolhapur. 
' School Master, Murbad, Thana. 
' School Master, Basani, Ratnagiri. 

^ School Master, Anjarle, Ratnagiri. 
* School Master, Dahanu, Thdna. 
f" School Master, Ibrahmpur, Ratnagiri. 
8 Rao Saheb Shelke, Kolhapur. 
'^ School Master, Mitbav, Ratnagiri. 



The blood of fowls and goats is used as a At Rai, a custom prevails of putting coral 

protection against ghosts and Devuchdrs, and , necklaces on children as a protective against 
also against witchcraft. Charmed water is 1 evil spirits.* 

waved round the person affected by an evil 
spirit, and thrown away. Rings, amulets, and 
anklets made of metals of five kinds are put 
on the hands and legs of cliildrcn to ward off 
the effects of evil spirits.^ 

It is customary among certain people to apply 

Iron nails and horseshoes are driven into 
the threshold or on to the door of a house on 
the full moon day or the last day of the Hindu 
calendar month at evening time, to prevent 
the entrance of evil spirits. .Dirty localities 
being considered to be haunts of evil spirits, 

spittle to the sandalpaste mark on the forehead people living in such localities burn incense 
of a man, and to the red Kunhu mark on the ' j^ ^^^^-^^ houses every day. While exorcising 

forehead of an uuwidowed woman. It is cou' 
sidered to be a protection against evil spirits. 2 

The beak of an eagle, a stick cut from a 
tree known as Pdndhri^ a cane having three 
joints, and the root of a shrub called Shrdvad, 
which has white leaves, are used as protection 
against evil spirits.^ 

At Pendur in the Malwan taluka of the 
Ratnagiri District it is believed that an iron 
stick held in the hand is a protection against 
evil spirits.* 

evil spirits the sorcerers throw charmed Udid 
grains and Rale panic seeds on the bodj- of 
the diseased, or place these things below his 
bed. Rings made of metals of five kinds, — 
iron, copper, brass, silver and gold — are 
charmed on an eclipse day, and worn by people. 
Red lead and cowries are tied to the necks 
or feet of animals as protection against evil 
spirits. The spirits that haunt buried treasures 
are pacified by tlie blood of fowls and goats 

At Chauk in the Karjat taluka of the j when digging up such treasures.9 
Kolaba District, pictures of certain deities are : Certain mantras are written on a paper, and 

tattooed on the body for the purpose of the paper is tied to a black cotton string, or the 

protection against evil spirits. It is also bell- paper is put into a copper amulet, and then tied 

eved that evil spirits run away when salt and to a black cotton string. The black cotton 

garlic are thrown into fire as they cannot bear string with the amulet is then tied round the 

the smoke of burning garlic.^ ^^^^ ^j. ^jj^ ,ig£.k of a person attacked by evil 

At Medhe in the Robe taluka, when the dead gpjrits^ or suffering from malarial fevers. 

body of a woman dying within ten days of j ^j^^^^ mantras are never disclosed to 

her delivery is taken out of the house for . j m 

^ 1 anybody.'^" 

burial, an iron horseshoe is driven into the ! ,t-7-j . ii i ll ti _ „j i, „,-;.,,,. 
' I Nadadora is a black cotton tliread liaving 

threshold ot the house, and grains of Ndchani 
are scattered in the street while the corpse is 
being carried to the burial ground." 

At Bhuwaii in the Murbad taluka some 

seven or nine knots with a charmed paper in 
one of these knots. The thread is first held 
over burning incense, and then tied round the 

c T .-u 4. i.1, neck or the arm of the diseased. Sunday 

people tie a square piece of leather to the "^ch. oi 

necks of their children as protection against j is generally chosen for attaching these 

evil spirits^ ' threads.^! 

1 School Master, Ubhadaada, Ratnagiri. 
3 School Master, Fonde, Ratnagiri. 
5 School Master, Chauk, Koldba. 
' School Master, Bhuwan, Thana. 
s Rao Saheb Shelke, Kolhapur. 

-' School Master, Biindivade, Ratnsigiri. 
4 School Master, Pendur, Ratndgiri. 
« School Master, Medhe, KoWba. 
» School Master, Rai, Thdna. 
■0 School Master, Bandivade, Ratndgiri. 

" School Master, Kalse, Ratnagiri. 



At Poladpur in the KoLiba District, there 
lived a sorcerer who used to give such amulets 
and charmed threads. He placed about ten 
or twelve copper rings or amulets in a copper 
plate kept in the sun. While thus exposed to 
tlie sim, these amulets were continuously watdi- 
ed by the sorcerer for some two hours, repeating 
certain manfras.^ 

At Malad in the Thana District, copper 
amulets and charmed black cotton threads 
in the name of Kal Bhairav, an incarnation 
of the god Shiva, are used as protective 
against evil spirits. They are tied to the amis 
or the neck of the diseased on an eclipse day, 
on the last day of the Hindu calendar month, 
or on a Tuesdaj', Wednesday and Saturday.2 

At Kolhapur, the use of amulets is generally 
resorted to by people suffering from the 
attacks of evil spirits or from malarial fevers. 
The sorcerer who exorcises the evil spirits 
writes certain mantras on a paper, or draws 
certain symbols and repeats tlie mantras over 
them. The paper is then wrapped in an 
amulet made of copper or silver, and fastened 
to a cotton thread. This amulet is tied round 
the arm or the neck of the diseased. Before 
tving it to the arm or the neck, it is once 
held over burning incense.' 

A sacred circle is frequentlv used as a pro- 
tection from spirits. The sorcerer draws a circle 
on the ground, with his stick, and the following 
articles are put inside it. Cocoanuts, lemons, 
red lead, and a Kohala gourd. Fowls are also 
sacrificed to this circle. The filling in of tliis 
circle is called mdndahharane by the exorcists.* 

Rice or Vdid grain, and ashes charmed bj' 
mantras, are scattered round a certain area 
of land, or arc given to a person supjjosed to 
be affected by evil spirits. The spirits cannot 
enter a place charmed in this manner. They 
are also scattered round the place supposed 
to be haunted by evil spirits in the belief that 
neither evil spirits nor snakes can transgress 
the boundary thus marked by a sorcerer.' 

Formerly sages and saints used to make 
such sacred circles round their residence, re- 
peating certain mantras^ for their protection 
: from evil spirits. It is believed that the 
spirits cannot enter or leave these enchanted 
circles. They used to bury bottles containing 
such spirits at the boundaries of these circles. 
There are many such places in the Kolhapur 
District, such as Buransaheb of Brahmapuri, 
the Sadhubuwa of Fauhiila, and Babu Jamiil 
at Kolhapur.*^ 

It is a general belief among all classes of 
Hindus in the Bombay Presidency that Satur- 
day- is an unlucky day, and in some places 
Friday and Tuesday are also considered 

Sunday is considered as an ordinary day. 

Monday, Wednesday and Thursday are 
belie\ed to be auspicious or lucky days. 

It is said that a thing suggested or thought 
of on Friday eaimot be carried out success- 

Sowing seed and watering trees is strictly 
forbidden on Sunday. It is believed that 
trees do not bear well if watered on Sundays.* 

Tuesday and Fridaj^ are considered unlucky 
days for beginning a new task. Wednesday 
and Saturday are said to be inauspicious for 
visiting another village.'' 

The numbers 2, 6 11, and zero are believed 
to be lucky, 4, 5, 10 and 8 are unlucky, and 
1) 3, 7 and 9 are considered as middling or 

The figure zero is by some considered 

The numbers 5. 7, 9 are said by some , to 
be auspicious. and 1,3, 11 and 1 3 
inauspicious. -"^^ 

Odd numbers are auspicious, and even num- 
bers are said to be inauspicious. ^^ 

1 School Master, Poladpur, Kolaba. 
3 Rdo Saheb, Shelke, Kolhapur. 
5 School Master, Ubhadanda, Ratnagiri. 
7 School Master, Ubhadanda, Ratnagiri. 
9 School Master, Khopoli, Kolaba. 
" School Master, Bandivade, Ratnagiri. 

- School Master, Maliid, Thana. 
* School Master, Bandivade, Ratnagiri. 
^ Rao Saheb Shelke, Kolhapur. 
' School Master,Ba3ani, Ratnagiri. 
'» School Master, Rai, Thana 
"- Rao Saheb Shelke, Kolhapur. 1 



The following are generally held to be 
auspicious omens : — 

While going on any business, to come across 
an unwidowed woman, a cow, Brahmans, a 
Hvc-petaled flower, or a pot tilled with water ;i 
the throbbing of the right eytlid and of the 
right arm of a man, and of the left eyelid of a 
woman ; a Brahman coming inj front with a 
cup and a spoon in his lund after taking his 
bath;- the appearance of a peacock, the 
Bitdradwdj or the blue jay, and the mongoose, 
especially when they pass on the left side ot 
the person going on business.^ 

The following are considered to be auspi- 
cious when seen within a hundred paces of a 
person starting on business ; — 

Brahmans, unwidowed women, boiled food, 
meat, fishes, milk, any kind of corn, the bird 
Chdslia ot the blue jay, passing by the left 
side, the appearance of the moon in front, a 
person coming across one's path with vessels 
filled with water, and a married couple, a cow 
with its calf, images of god, cocoanuts and other 
fruits, the mother, white clothes, the sound 
of a musical instrument, a horse, an elephant, 
curds, flowers, a lighted lamp, a jackal, a 
spiritual preceptor, a public woman, a Mahar, 
a washerman coming with a bundle of washed 
clothes, and a marriage procession.* 

The following objects and persons are 
generally believed to be inauspicious : — 

Oil, buttermilk, a couple of snakes, a mon- 
kev pig, and an ass, firewood, ashes and cotton, 
a person with a disfigured nose, a man dressing 
his hair in the siiape of a crown, red garlands, 
wet clothes, a woman wearing red cloth, an 
empty earthen vessel, a Brahman widow, a 
BraKmachdri and an unmarried Brahman"', 
a widow, a bare-headed Brahman, a cat going 
across the path, a dog flapping his ears, 
meeting a barber witk his bag, a beggar. 

sneezing, or the asking of a question at the 
time of departure, waiting, meeting a person 
with an empty vessel,'' howling of dogs and 
jackals, a pair of crows playing on the ground, 
and a lighted lamp extinguished by its fall 
on the ground." 

While plans or proposals are being made, it 
is considered inauspicious if any one sneezes 
or the sound of a lizard is heard. ^ Meeting 
a person of the depressed classes whose touch 
is pollution, or a Brahman who accepts funeral 
gifts, is considered •inaus))icioas.'' Meeting a 
woman who is in her menses, a mourner, a 
buffalo, a snake and a diwad are considered 
inauspicious.^" An iron vessel or an iron bar, 
cow dung cakes, salt, grass, a broom, a vulture, 
and a washerman bringing witii him dirty 
clothes are also considered to be inauspicious 
omens. ^^ 

Among the Hindus in Western India, for 
the purpose of helping the spirit to go to 
heaven safely, and for securing its goodwill 
towards the survivors, after death ceremonies 
called the Shrdddhas are generally performed. 
Some perforui these ceremonies once a year 
in the month of Bhddrapada, and others per- 
form them twice or thrice i.e. on the anniver- 
sary day of the deceased as well as in the 
dark half of Bhddrapada, which is generally 
known as the manes' fortnight (pitru 

The funeral solemnities performed from tlie 
1st to the 14th day from the death of the 
deceased are as described below : — 

On the first day, at the time of burning the 
dead body, a plot of ground is purified by 
repeating certain inantras^ and the corpse is 
then placed on it. Before setting the funeral 
pile on fire, balls of boiled rice or wheat flour 
are put on the face, the forehead, arms and 
the chest of the corpse. Such balls are placed 

■- School Master, Ubhadinda, Ratnagiri. 
^ School Master, Achare, Ratnagiri. 
5 School Master, Achare, Ratnagiri. 
' School Master, Khopoli, Kolaba. 
9 School Master, Anjarle, Ratnagiri. 
'1 Rio Stiheb Shelke, Kolhdpur. 

-' School Master, Khopoli, KoUba. 
■• School Master, Mitbav, Ratndgiri. 

* School Master, Ubhiddnda, Ratnagiri. 

* School Master, Mitbiv, Ratnagiri. 
'" School Master, Pendur, Ratnigiri. 
'2 School Master, Devgad, Ratndgiri. 



on the body of the deceased only when death 
has taken place on an unlucky day. or when 
there is an unlucky conjunction of stars. The 
son, or some other near relative, of tlie deceased 
generally performs these riles with the help 
of a liraliman priest. On the third day he 
goes to the burning |)lae<-, collecls the ashes 
of the deceased, and throws them into the sea. 
On this occasion he is accompanied by the 
relatives of tiie deceased. Rich persons who are 
able to go to Benares keep tlie bones of their 
deceased parents and tlirow them into the 
Ganges at Prayaga near Benares after per- 
forming certain ■'^/i/of/f/^in* there. The giving 
of oblations continues daily till the tenth d.av. 
The oblations of th'e tenth day are called Das 
Pinda, The rites of llie eleventh day are 
called Ekotistha. On the eleventh day the 
person performing the rites has to change his 
sacred thread, after sipping a little cow's 
urine. Cooked food is prepared at the place 
where the rites of the ele%-enth day are per- 
formed, and Briihmans are fed there, or at 
least thirty-two niouthfuls of cooked food are 
offered to the sacred fire. A big ball of 
boiled rice is put before the sacred fire or near 
the Brahmans taking their meals. This ball 
is then thrown into the sea. A male calf is 
branded, worshipped and let loose. This calf 
is called Vasu, and is considered sacred by the 
villagers. On the 1 1th day, special ceremonies 
for propitiating the eight T'asiis and the eleven 
Rudras are performed, and gifts of a plot of 
ground, a cow, cooking vessels, various kinds 
of corn, golden images, silver and copper 
coins, clothes, shoes, umbrellas, bedding, etc. 
are given to the Brahmans collected there. 
On the 13th day after death a feast is given 
to 1 3 or more Brahmans and the other relatives. 
Navakdddn, i.e.. the gift of a ship and 
Gopradani.e., of a cow and a calf, are also 
given to the Brahmans on tlie understanding that 

tliey will help the soul of tiie dead while 
crossing the river Vaitarna.' 

Water mixed with iil or sesaumm seed, 
sandalpaste, and oblations of boiled rice are 
given daily to tiie manes to secure their good- 
will tow.-irds the survivors. 2 

At Bankavli in tlie Dapoli taluka of tlie 
Ratnagiri District, in order to prevent tiie 
soul from assuming the form of a ghost, there 
is a custom of tying a piece of Gulvel^ a 
species of moonseed, or the seed of a vegeta- 
ble known as Mdthbhdji, round the neck of 
tlie before burning it. It is also 
believed that, by doing this, tlie soul is prevent- 
ed from troubling tiie survivors.' 

At Poladpur in the Kohiba District, some 
\illagers drive an iron nail into the head of 
the corpse before it is taken to the funeral 
ground. They believe that, in consequence, 
the soul of the deceased will not turn into an 
evil spirit. Some people scatter grain on the 
road while the corpse is being carried to the 
cremation ground."* 

Among the Hindus in the Konkan, as well 
as in the Deccan, dead bodies are generallv 
burnt, hut under tlie following circumstances 
they are buried. 

Persons dying of small po.x, women dying 
in childbirth or during their menses, children 
dying within six months from their birth, and 
Satiydsis are buried. Tlie bodies of persons 
suffering from lejirosy are necessarily buried. ^ 
Among Lingayats the bodies are alwavs 
buried. Certain mantras are repeated while 
burying or burning the dead body. While 
burx'ing, cocoanuts and certain kinds of grain 
are tin own into the grave, and after covering 
the dead body with salt, the grave is filled up 
with earth and stones.'' While burning, tlie 
dead body is placed on the funeral pile 
with its head to the north and feet tow;ards 
the south. Tulsi wood, sandal-wood, and 
Bel wood are kept on the pile before placing 

' Rao Saheb Shelke, Kolhapur. 

3 School Master, Bankavli, Ratnagiri. 

5 School Master, Ubhadanda, Ratnagiri. 

- School Master, Bandivade, Ratnagiri. 

s School Master, Poladpur, Koliiba. 

c School Master, Ibhrampur, Ratnagiri. 



thf clead body over it. Cocoanuts and 
camphor cakes are placed on the body, and 
it is set on tire. Auion};: the Lingayats and 
(josiivis thed ad arf buried. IJefore burying, 
llie Lingayats haM- to take a written order 
t'roin their priest, the Ayya or Jangam. 
Tlie paper is tlien tied to tin iiick of tlie 
deceased, and the body is placed in a bag 
made of new cloth, the head being allowed to 
rei.iaiii out of the bag. Bhasiiiu or a^lles, salt 
and camphor are also put into the bag along 
with the corpse, which is then buried. The 
.langam repeats nidnlras wlun tin body is in the 
grave. No such written order is necessary for 
the burial ot Gosavis. A cocoanut is broken 
on tlie head of the corpse at the time of 
burj'ing it. Among high class Hindus the 
corpse is carried to the funeral ground in a 
bier made of bamboos. Among the Lingayats 
.•I gaily dressed frame called Makhar is pre- 
pared on the bier, and the body is dressed -with 
clothes and head dress and seated in the Mak- 
hnr. Some of thcni carry the dead body in a 
hag made of l)lanket. There is a custom of 
keeping fool-prints on the spot where a Saii- 
jjcisi is buried, and they are daily worshipped 
by the people. ^ Among the Kathawatis of 
Than.i and Kolaba districts the dead body is 
first buried, and after a few days the skeleton 
is taken out of the grave and then burnt as 
usual.- .Vniong the high class Hindus the 
moustaches are shaved at the death of parents 
paternal uncle and elder brother. Among the 
Shudras it is not necessary to shave.-' Persons 
who have lost their jjarents have to perform 
certain funeral rites or Sliidildlias when they 
visit holy places such .as Benares, Prayag, 
Ayodhya and Nasik, and they have to shave 
their moustaches at all these places before 
jierforming the funeral rites,' Moustaches 
are also shaved as a penance for certain sins. 

« RSo Sdheb Shelke, Kolhapur. 

3 School Master, Mitbiiv, Ratnagiri. 

5 Scbool Master, Khecl, Ratnagiri. 

^ Scliool Master, Ubiiiiilancia, Ratnagiri. 

3 Rao SiSlieb 

The Agnihotri, i.e.. one who preserves perpe- 
tual fire in his house for worship, has to get 
liimself shaved every fortnight.'' 

Among high class Hindus boiled rice is 
dailj' offered to the dead after a portion has 
been thrown into the fin-, the remainder being 
given to the crows. The portion thrown in 
the fire is called Vaislivadev^ andtliat which is 
given to the crows is called Kagivds. Among 
other Hindus it is given on the last day of 
Bhddrapada and on tlie date of the father's 
death, annually.*^ Oblations of boiled rice are 
given to the dead every day, on the List day of 
the Hindu calendar month, on the date ol ;i 
person s death every month, on the same date of 
the dark half of Bhddrapada every year. These 
oblations are put out of the house before taking 
the meals. It is believed that the ancestors 
come down in the form of crows to partake 
of these oH'erings.^ Oblations of cooked food 
are also oil'ered to a cow, and considered thus 
to be received by the dead. They are espeeiallj- 
given to the crows annually in the dark half of 
Bhddrapada on the date of the deceased's 
death. '^ After the corpse has been carried to 
the funeral ground, an oil lamp containing 
one cotton wick is kept on the spot where the 
deceased expired. The flame of the lamp is 
directed towards the south as it is believed that 
the soul goes to he.vven by the south. A ball 
of biiled riei' and .i little quantity of water or 
milk is kept daily for the first ten days near 
the lamp while repeating the name of the 
deceased and of thv gotra to which it belonged. 
The lamp is taken out of the house on the 
nth day." 

Hindus beliive that impurity attaches to all 
the things in the house in consequence of the 
death of a person in that house. ^\11 those 
things which can lie luirified by washing are 
washed .and taken back, while things like 

- Scliool Master, Jlokhade, Thana. 
' Riio Saheb Slielke, KoUiilpur. 
'' School Master, Kelwa-Miihim, Thdna. 
* School Master, Devgad, Ratnagiri. 
Shelke, Kolhapur. 



earthen pots, cooked food. etc. are thrown 
;nvay, special care being taken to break tliese 
pots, so that they may not be used again. Even 
the walls ot" the house are white washed. '^ The 
earthen pots that are required for the funeral 
rites of the dead are all broken. One whicli 
is required for boiling water to bathe tlie 
corpse is broken wiien the body is carried to 
the funeral ground. Of the rest, one is broken 
at the funeral pile after the son has passed 
thrice round the pile with an earthen vessel 
tilled witli water. It is believed that birds and 
animals drinking water out of these vessels 
would be infected by disease, and this is the 
reason why these pots are broken. The mour- 
ners wlio use eartlien vessels during tlie mour- 
ning break them at the end of the mourning 
period. 2 Among the Agris of Chaul in the 
Kolaba District, all earthen vessels in the house 
are broken on the eleventh day after a death in 
the family, the chief reason .issigned for this 
act being tliat the wislies .uid desires of the 
di-ceased might lurk in tlie earthen vessels 
aud cause trouble to the inmates of the house.* 
All the members of the family of the dead 
liave to observe mourning for ten days. Tliey 
are purified (m the eleventh day after taking 
.1 bath and sipping Panchgavya^ or the five pro- 
ducts of the cow. The son of the dead person, or 
one who performs the funeral rites of tlie dead 
is purified on the twelfth day after completing 
the rites of Sapindi, A man in mourning 
does not touch those who are not in mourning. 
If anybody touches him, both of them have to 
take a bath. Tlie son of the deceased or, in tiie 
absence of a son, any male member belonging 
to the family is entitled to perform the 
funeral rites of the dead. These rites are 
performed during the first twelve days, beginn- 
ing from the first day or from Ihe 3rd, 
5th, 7th or the 9tli. One who performs tiiese 
rites has to sleep on the ground during tliese 

twelve days. A person hearing of the death 
of a member of his family within the first 
ten days from the date of the death, becomes 
free from that mourning on the eleventh 
day. If lie happens to hear it within one 
month of the death, lie has to observe it 
for three days and after one month he has to 
observe it for one day only.* The son, or 
one who performs tli.e funeral rites of the 
deceased has to sleep on the ground, and 
to take his meals onh' once a day till the end 
of the 13th day. He takes his batli in cold 
water. Sweet things are not prepared in the 
house during the days of mourning. During 
the period of mourning, every morning, a 
Braliman comes to the mourner's house and 
recites some passages from the Garud Piirdna^ 
which relates to the state of the soul after 
death. On tlie eleventh day the liouse is 
besmeared with cowdung, and cow's urine is 
sprinkled in the house. All the clothes are 
washed. Mourning is not observed in the 
case of a death of a Sanydsi, and the Lingayats 
do not observe any kind of mourning'''. 

The brotlier of the deceased, his son, grand- 
sou and all the members belonging to the 
family, have to observe the mourning for ten 
days. The married daughter of the deceased 
has to observe it for three daj-s. From the 
filth or si.xth generation in the same familj', it 
is observed for three or one day only." In 
case of the death of a wife's parents, the 
husband has to observe mourning for three 
days. During the mourning days people do 
not worship the gods or go to the temples. 
Milk is also prohibited during the mourning 
period. The mourners are not to touch any- 
body e-xcept the members of their family.^ 

On the thirteenth day the sons and other 
members of the family are taken out to visit the 
temple of any deity by the people assembled 

1 School Master, Ubhiidanda, Ratnagiri. - Kao Saheb Shelke, Kolhapur. 

3 School Master, Chowl, Kolaba. * School Master, Ubhadanda, Ratnagiri. 

5 Rao Saheb Shelke, Kolhapur. '■ School Master, Mitbav, Ratnagiri. 

' School Master, Vavanje, Kolaba. 



for the purpose. It is believed that after 
going to llii- t<uil)lc oil till- 13tii day, tlie sons 
and the other nieuibers of the iauiily an- at 
liberty to jjo out of thi- house ^ 

At Kolh;ipur it is believed tlial tlie deities 
Etabii and Kalk;'ii of tlie Konkan dislriets 
kee)) Willi lluni evil spirits as tlicir servants. 
These servant spirits obey the orders of these 
deities. Some people in this district go to 
the temples of these deities and request them to 
lend them the serviees of these spirit servants. 
It is considered very lucky to secure the 
lielp of these spirits. The temple ministrant 
then requests the deity to give a Kaiil or omen. 
For this ))urpose, the temple uiinistrant calls 
on the deity to enter his body, and when he 
is possessed by tlie sjiirit of the deity, he 
."illows the applicant to take with him one of 
tiie deity's servants for a fixed period. The 
Gurav, or the ministrant. tlien explains to the 
person the period for which the spirit servant 
is given, and the amount of the annual tribute 
required to be given to the deity for the use of 
her servant. He also gives him a cocoanut 
and sacred ashes. The applicant then returns 
home, believing that the spirit servant will 
follow him, and from that lime he prospers. 
This spirit servant is called Cheiuk, and it 
can be seen only by the person in whose charge 
it is given b.v the Gurav.- 

At Achare in the Racn;igiri District, the spirit 
of a Brahman well versed in the I'cdas is called 
Mahapurusha and it is said to be benevolent. 
It haunts Pipal and Umbar trees." 

At Murbad in the Tbana District, the sjiirit 
known as A'et.'il, the king of evil spirits, is 
considered to be benevolent.'' 

The spirits known as Maliapurusli haunts 
tlie Pipal and Umbar trees. Avagat the ghost 
of a widow haunts the A rati (Phyllanthus 
emblica) tree. Alavant. the ghost of a woman 
dying at childbirth or during her menses, lives 
in the Xagchd7npa, Surang and tlie Kajra 
trees. Devacbar, .Sambandh. Mun.ja, Zoting, 
Khavis and Kliapr.i reside in trees and plants."' 

The )ieople of KolhapuT believe that tin 
spirits known as Brinilia.sambandh. Bralmii 
Rakshasa, and Khavis reside in trees.'' 

The spirits known as Develuir and Clialegat 
;ire considered to be the s))ecial protectors of 
crops and cattle.^ 

The people of Ubhadanda in the Ratnagiri 
District believe that the village deities aiul 
the Devachiirs are the special protectors of 
crops and cattle. Offerings of fowls and 
cocoanuts are made to them annually .* 

At Kochare in the Ratnagiri District, the 
spirit known as Viswati is believed to be the 
special protector of crops and cattle.'' 

The people of the Kolaba District consider 
that the spirits known as Mhashya, Khavis, 
and Bandav arc the protectors of crops and 
cattle. 1" 

At Dahanu in the Thani District, the spirit 
Cheda is believed to be the gu.irdian of crops- 
and cattle,^^ 

The people of Kolhapur believe that the 
deities of the fields protect the crops .and 
cattle. Those who are in jjossession of the 
Chetuk, or the servant spirit, are sure to find 
their crops and cattle protected by this 

Evil spirits are not usually invoked to 
frighten children, but occasionally the names 
of goblins such as Bagulbaw.a, Bowaji, Gosavi 
etc. are mentioned to scare theni.^"' 

' School Master, MdlM, Tbana. 
' School Master, Achare, Ratnagiri. 
^ School Master, Achare, Ritnilgiri 
" School Master, Foncie, Ratnagiri. 
' School Master, Kocliare, Ratnagiri. 
" School Master, Dahanu, Thana. 

15 School Master, 

2 Rao Siiheb Shelke, Kolhdpur. 
1 School Master,, Thiina. 
" Riio S^heb Shelke, Kolhiipur. 
* Sohool Jlaster, Ubhadanda, Ratnagir!. 
1" School Master Varsai, KoiAba. 
1- Rao Siiheb .Shelke, Kolhripur. 
Achare, Ratnagiri. 



Groves of mango trees -ire considered to be 
sacred as they liave a pleasing appearance, 
and afFord grateful shelter against the heat of 
the day. It is a general belief among Hindus 
that trees from which such ))leasure and pro- 
tection are derived must naturally be the abode 
of the gotls. There are many such groves in 
Satara. During the spring season people go 
to these groves and worship the trees. The 
Hindus liave a general prejudice against 
cutting living trees which yield fruits, and it 
is considered specially inauspicious to cut the 
following trees : — 

Umbar, Vad or Banian tree, Pipal^ Saundad 
or Shami^ Palus^ Bel^ Rui, Avail and the Tulsi 
plant, for it is believed that tliese trees are 
the abode of deities, e.g, the god Dattatraya 
resides under the Umbar tree, the goddess 
Parvati on the Banian tree, and the god Vislmu 
resides near the Tulsi plant. The god 
Brahma, the creator of the world, is found in 
the Pipal tree. The plantain tree is also con- 
sidered to be sacred. While gathering a bmich 
of plantains, the tree is first cut before the 
btmch. It is considered inauspicious to gather 
the bunch without so doing. *• 

There are certain groves at Ubhadanda in 
the Vengurla taluka of the Ratnagiri District 
vrhich are supposed to be haunted bj' Deva- 
cJmrs, and are therefore not cat by the 

The people of Ibhrampur in the Chiplun 
taluika consider it inauspicious to cut the Vad 
and Pipal trees of which the thread ceremo- 
nies have been performed. After the thread 
ceremony of these trees is over, a stone plat- 
form is raised around them.^ 

At Fonde in the Devgad taluka, it is con- 
sidered in-pspicious to cut the trees and the 
groves tlial surround llie temple of a village 
deity, for they are believed to belong to 
that deity. ■' 

At Padglie in the Tliana District, the trees 
wliich are supposed to liave been haunted by 
evil spirits such as Sambandh^ Mtinja Deva- 
chdi\ etc. are not generally cut by the people 
through fear of these spirits. When any 
tree is cut down, the custom is to keep a stone 
at the root of the tree in order that the 
place m.iy no longer be aifected or haunted 
by the spirit in the tree.=^ There are certain 
families wlio do not burn Pipal^ Khair or 
Shiwani wood. They believe that the burning 
of these trees causes harm to their families. 
It is said tliat the burning of tlie Apta tree 
causes the breeding of the insect known as 
Gochadi, i. e. the cattle or dog louse.*' 

Tliere is an Awdumbar tree of the god 
Dattatraya at Bhillawadi, and a big Banian 
tree near the 7nath of tlie I,ingayat swdmi 
named Kadappa iiear Kolhapur, which are 
worshipped by the people of the neighboiwing 
villages. The Saundad tree, better known as 
Shami, is worshipped once a year on the 
Dasara, the 10th day of the bright half of 
Ashtvin (October). It is said that Rama, the 
seventh incarnation of Vishnn, kept his arms 
on the Shami tree during his fourteen years' 
exile, and took tliem back again wlien he 
marched upon Lanka or Ceylon to kill Rawan, 
the demon king of Ceylon. Wliile going to 
Lanka he bowed to llie Shami tree, and as 
he was successful in his undertaking; the 
Marathas used to start for a camjiaign on the 

1 Rao Saheb Shelke, Kolhapur. 

^ School Master, Ibhrampur, Ratnagiri. 

5 School Master, Padghe, Thana. 

- School Master, Ubhadanda, Ratndgiri. 
* School Master, Fonde, Ratndgiri. 
" School Master, Dahigaon, Thatia. 



Dasara day after worshipping the Shami tree, 
and distributing its leaves among their friends 
calling it Suivarn or gold. This is said 
to be the origin of the festival o£-Dasara, A 

Umbar — Wlien the god Vislrnu in his fourth 
incarnation, called Narsinh, i.e. half man and 
lialf lion, tore into pieces the body of tht 
demon named Hiranyakashipu with his claws. 

species of Uie tamarind tree called Gorakh ^ j^^ ^^j^. ^ burning sensation of the poison from 

Chinch is said to be comiected with the Hindu 

saint GoralihnaUi. For tliis reason this tree 

is worshipped by the people. A great fair is 

held every year at liattis Shirale in the Satara 

District, which is situated at a distance of 

about ten miles from KoUuipur.^ 

The Pipal, the Umbar, the Vad or Banian , generally plant the ivthar and Tuhi trees in 
tree, and the Tulsi plant are worshipped by front of their houses, and worsliip tl.un daily. 
Hindus in general. The Apia tree is wor- The juice of the root of the Umbar has a 

the body of that demon, which was assuaged 
by thrusting Jus liands into tlie trunk of the 
Umbar or Aivudumbar trtc.'' 

In order that they may gt t the auspicious 
siglit of a deilv tarlv in Ihi- morning, Hindus 

shipped by Hindus on the Dasara day, and its 
leaves are distributed under the name of sone, 
or gold, among their friends and relatives. - 

At Medhe in the Roha taluka of the Kolaba 
District, there is a tree Veliala (Beleric 
myrobalan) whicli is believed to be connected 
with the local deity Mhasoba. It is consi- 
dered to be a sacred tree, and nobody dares to 
cut it or to touch it witli the feet.^ 

At Shirgaon hi the Mahim taluka of the 
Thana District there is a lianjani tree on tlie 
bank of a tank called Khambale, which is said 
to be connected with the deity Brahma ; and 
therefore no branch of that tree is cut by tlie 
people. It is considered harmful to cut the 

At Ganagapur in the Kolhapur District, 
there is a Vad tree coimected with the saint 
Kabir. It is called Kabirvad. Tliere is also 
an Arvdumbar tree connect (d with the god 
Dattatraya, and known as Dattdfraya Airdnvi- 

The Umbar, Pi pal, T'ad, and the Tulsi 
plant are considered to be sacred, and are 
respected by Hindus, The following are some 
of the legends about their sacredness. 

cooling efl'ect, and hence it is freely used in 
cases of measles cr itcli. Its sap is also usid 
as medicine for swellings. It is very pleasant 
to sit under the shade of this tree, and as it is 
believed that the god Dattatra_\ a resides 
beneath this tree, it is held very sacred by the 

Pipal — The Pipal tree is considered very 
sacred because it is believed tliat tlie sod 
Brahma resides in the roots, the god \'islmit 
in the trunk, and the god Shiva on the top of 
this tree. Persons who make a particular vow 
or have any objects to be fulfilled wor.sliip tin 
Pipal tree, and walk round it several times 
every day.* The evil spirits Samba7id]i, 
Devachdr, Munja, and J'eidl liaunt the Pipal 
tree. These spirits are considered to be the 
strvants of the god Shiva. It is also believed 
that persons who worship and walk round this 
tree daily are not affected bj- those spirits. 
The Pipal tree is specially worshipped at 
dawn on Saturday as it is considered that the 
gods Brahma, Vishnu, and Mahesh or Shiva 
happen to be there at that time.' 

' Rdo Sdheb Shelke, Kolhapur. 
3 School Master, Medlie, Kolaba. 
5 School Master, Umele, Thana. 
7 Rilo Sdheb Shelke, Kolhapur. 

2 School Master, Shiravade, Ratniigiri. 
* School Master, Shirgaon, Thana. 
^ School Master, Fonde, Batnagiri. 
s Rao Saheb Shelke, Kolhdpur. 

School Master, Ubh^danda, Ratniigiri. 



Vad or tlie Banian tree — A prince named 
^atj-awan died of snakebite iindur tlie I'ud 
tree. His wife named Siivitri, wlio was very 
<"liasle and dutiful, requested Yama, tlie god of 
death, and succeeded in securing from him the 
life of her husband Satyawan. As the prince 
Satyawaii nturned from the jaws of death 
under the J ad tree, this tree was specially 
worshipped by her, and it is therefore believed 
that Savitri has ever since then been responsi- 
ble for tlie practice of worshipping the Vad 
tree bv women for the purpose of scouring a 
long life to their husbands. '^ It is also believed 
that the god Vishnu takes shelter under the 
Tad at the time of llie destruclio'.i of 
the world. The worship of this tree is 
-similar to that of the other deities, and women 
take turns ■ironiul it at the close of tlie worsliip 
or puja." 

The Tul.1! plant is worshipped daily by tlie 
Hindus in general, and women in particular, by 
keeping the plant lu- ir their houses. The god 
Vishnu is worsliii)i)ed )> irticularly by the leaf 
of this plant." The Tiilsi plant is considered 
by the people to r.'iiriseiit the goddess Luxini. 
Ihe wife o'f Vishnu. Hindu women will not 
take their meals before worshipjiing the Tiihi d.iilv in the morning. It is also said that 
the god ^^isllnu, in his eighth incarnation called 
Krishna, had loved N'runda. the wife of .a 
<lemon. After her death she was burnt, but 
.«-i her burning ground there grew the Talsi 
plant. As Krishn.a loved Vrunda very dearly, 
he bcg.m to love this plant also, .and lunce 
tlie image of B;tl Krishna, or the god Vishnu, 
js married to this every year on the 12th 
day of the bright half of Kdrtil- (November). •• 
As it is also believed that the god ^'ishnu 
resides in the Tuhi plant, the worship of this 
j)lant is equivalent to the worship of the god 

Besides the above mentioned trees, the Palus 
{Butea frondosa), the BeJ, a tree sacred to god 
-Shiva, aiid the 'Shami (Prosopis spicigera), a 

tree sacred to god Ginpati the son of Shiva, 
are considered to be holy by the Hindus. ^ 

A commaii custom aniang Hindus is for a 
p.-rsjii who has lost his two wires and wislies 
to marry a third, to be first married to a liui 
plant, and then to the actual bride. His marri- 
age with the Rui plant is considered as a third 
marriage. After the marriage, tlie Rui plant 
is cu". down .and buried, and thus the marriage 
M'itli the tliird bride is considered to be a fourth 
marriage. The nurriige with the Rui plant 
has been adopted in the belief that the tliird 
wife is sure to die imless the spirit of the 
deceased is luide to enter the Rui plant.'' 

When a girl is born under tlie influsnce of 
inauspicious i)lanets which may be harmful to 
her husband, she is first married to a tree or 
an earthen pot, and then to the bridegroum. 
Tiie marriage with the earthen pot is c died 
Kumhhavivalia^ or the pot-wedding. It is 
believed tliat. by observing this practice, the 
danger to her husband is avoided. The d inger 
passes to the tree to which she is first married.' 

Among the lower classes in the Tliana Dis- 
trict® a poor man unable to marry owing to his 
poverty is first married to .a Ru' plant and 
then to a widow. Tiiis marriage with a widow 
is called pat Idvanc. This remarriage of a 
widow amjng tlR- lower classes is generally 
jierform^d at night, and under an old mango tree. 
It is never performed in the bouse. A widow 
who has remarried cannot take part in any 
.auspicious ceremony such as a marriage, etc.^ 

At Vankavli in tlie Ratnagiri Disrtict there 
is a custom among the low class Hindus of .i 
woman who has lost her second luisband .and 
wishes to marry for the tliird time, first 
marrvinu- a cock, i.e., she takes the cock in her 
.arms -at the Uni" of her marriage with the third 

Persons who have no children make a vow to 
Khandoba at Jejuri that the firstborn, male or 
female, shall be offered to him. The females, 
offered in fulfilment of such vows are called 

' Riio Saheb Shelke, Kolhapur. 
■' Sctiool Master, Dahiinu, Thana. 
■' School Master, Devgad, Ralnagiri. 
^ School Master, Khopoli, Koliiba. 

' School Master, 

- School Master, Mitbav, Katnagiri. 
< School Master, Ubh;idanda, Ratnagiri. 
'■ School Master, Mitbav, Ratnagiri. 
' School Master, Edwan, Th;ina. 
Vankavli, Ratnagiri. 



ifurafh. TJiey :ire married to Ihe gcd Khan- ] 
iloh.i, .uul Iiavi- to earn their livelihocd by 
begging in villages. A male child tl.iis ofl'trtd 
to the god is called a Vaghya} 

There is a custom of oiiVring children to the 
deities Yallamnia and Khandoba in fulfilment of 
vows made in order to get a cliild. The child 
is taken to the temple of these deities, accom- 
panied with music. The temple ministrant 
asks the child to stand on a wooden board en 
a heap of rice in front of the deity, and puts 
into its hands a paradi — a flat basket of 
bamboo, tying to its neck the darshana of the 
deity. A female child is married to the 
dagger— A'a/^«'r — of the deity. When once 
this ceremony lias been performed, parents 
abandon tlieir riglits to such children. When 
these cliildren come of age, the males can marry 
but the females cannot. The latter earns her 
livelihood begging jogava in the name of the 
goddess Araba with a paradi in her hand. A 
male child offered to the goddess Yallamma is 
called jogata, and a female, jogatin. Children 
dedicated to the goddess Mayaka are called 
Jogi and Jogin. Children offered to Firangdi 
and Ambabdi are called Bhiitya (male) -ind 
Bind in ( female). - 

In the Konkan districts there is a class of 

women known as Bhavinis who are said to be 

married to Khanjir^ i.e., a dagger belonging to 

the god. They are also called deva i/oshita. i.e., 

j)rostitutes offered to the god. They have no 

caste of their own. They retain the name of the 

caste to which they originally belonged, such 

as Marathe Bhavini, Bhandari Bhavini, Sutar 

Bhavini, etc. The following accomit is given 

of the (n-igin of tlie sect of Bhavinis. A 

woman wishing to abandon her husband goes 

to the temple of a village deity at night, and in 

presence of the people assembled in that 

temple she takes oil from the lamp burning in 

the temple,! and pours it upon her head. This 

process is called Deval rigTiane, i.e., to enter 

into the service of the temple. After she has 

poured sweet oil from tlie Inmp upon her head, 

she has no further connection with her husband. 

She becomes the maid servant of the temple, and 
is free to behave as she likes. Daughters of 
such Bliavinis who do not wish t() marry, 
undergo the process of shesa bharane^ anel 
follow the occupation of their mothers. The 
sons of the Bhavinis hav<- an equal right to tin- 
property of their mother, but any dauglit" r 
who marries a lawful husband loses her share 
in the property of her mother. A Devalt 
follows the occupation of blowing tlu' horn or 
cornet, and is entitled to hold tlie torches in the 
marriage ceremonies of the people in the village. 
Many of them learn the art of playing upon 
the tabour — mruditnga — and are useful to- 
Kathekaris, /.e., those who recite legends of the 
gods with music and singing. Some of them 
become farmers while others are unoccupied. 

Bhavinis follow the occupation of a maid- 
servant in the temple, but their real occupation 
is that of public women. Tliey are not scorned 
bj- the public. On the contrary, they arc- 
required to be present at the time of a marriage 
to tie the marriage-string — Mangalsutra — of 
a bride, for they are supposed to enjoy 
perpetual unwidowhood — 'Janvia suwdsini.' 
Some of the houses of Bluivinis become the 
favourite resorts of gamblers and vagabonds, 
In the absence of a daughter, a Bhavini pur- 
chases a girl from a harlot, and adopts her as 
her daughter to carry on her profession.-' 

Snakes are believed to be tlie step-brothers 
of the gods. They reside under the earth 
and are very powerful. The snake is con- 
sidered to be very beau-tiful among creeping 
animals, and is one of the ornaments of tlu 
god Shiva. An image of a snake made of 
brass is kept in the temple of the god Shiva, 
and worshipped daily along with the god. 
There is a custom among the Hindus of 
; worshipping l^dga, i.e., the cobra, once a year 
on the A'a'gn panchami day, i.e., the fifth day 
of the bright half of Skrdwan ( August ). 
Images of snakes are drawn with sandalpaste 
on a wooden board or on the walls of houses, 

> School Master, Palshet, Ratnrfgiri. - Kao Siiheb Shelke, Kolhitpur. 

3 Scliool Master, Kalshe, Ratniigiri. 



and worsliipped by Hindu women on this day. 
Durvu grass, sacred to Ciaripati. parched rice 
lahya, legumes kadadan, and milk are offered 
to this image. Some people go to the snakes, 
abode Vand — an ant-hill — on this day to 
worship the smike itself, if Ihey Iiappen to 
catch sight of it.* 

It is said that at Battisa Siiirale iu the 
Belgiium District the real Naga comes out of 
its abode below the earth on this day, and is 
worshipped by the people. Milk and Inhya, 
parched rice, are put outside the house at night 
on this day willi the intention that they may 
be consumed by a sncike. Hindus do not dig 
or plougli the earth on Ndga panchami day. 
Even vegetables are not cut and fried on this 
day by some people.- 

Earthen images of snakes are worshipped 
by some people in the Konlcan districts on the 
Ndga panchami day. Tlie Xdga is considered 
to be a Brahman by caste, and it is believed 
that the family of the person who kills a 
snake becomes extinct. The cobra being con- 
sidered a Brahman, its dead body is adorned 
with the jdnawe. and then burnt as that of a 
human being. A copper coin is also thro\vn 
into its funeral pile."' 

At certain villages in the Decean .1 big 
earthen Image of a snake is consecrated in a 
public place on the Ndga panchami day, and 
worshipped by Hindus in general. ^Vomen 
.sing their songs in circles before this image 
while men perform tamdshds by its side. In 
fact, the day is enjoyed by thie people 
;is a holiday. The snake is removed next day, 
and an idol in the form of a man made of 
mud is seated in its place. This idol is called 
Shiralshet, who is said once to have been 
a king and to have ruled over this earth for 
oiie and one-fourths of a ghataka^ i. e., for 
half an hour only. This day, is observed as 
a day of rejoicing by the people.* 

The names of the snake deities are 
Takshaka, Vasuki and Sheslia. Their slirines 
are at Kolhapur, Nagothane, Prayaga, 
N'agadevachi Wadi and Subramhanya. A great 
fair is held every year at Battisa J^hirsile on 
tiie Ndga panchami day.-" 

There is a shrine of a snake deitv a( 
Savantwadi. The management of the shrine 
is in Die hands of the Stale officials. It is 
believed that a real snake resides therein." 

There is a shrine of a snake deity at Awas 
in the Alibag taluka of the Kolaba District, 
where a great fair is held every year on the 
14th day of (he bright half of Kdriik 
( November ). It is said that persons suf- 
fering from snakebites recover when taken in 
time to this temple.'' 

It is said that a covetous person who 
acquires great wealth during his life-time and 
dies without enjoying it, or without issue 
becomes a snake after death, and guards his 
buried treasures. At Kolhapur there was a 
Sdtvkdr — money-lender — named Kodulkar 

who is said to have become a snake, and to 
guard his treasures. In the village of 
Kailava in the Panhala petha of the Kolhapur 
District there is a snake in the house of a 
Kulkarni, who scares away those who try to 
enter the storehouse of the Kulkarni." 

It is a general belief among the Hindus 
that snakes guard treasures,, It is said that 
there are certain places guarded by snakes 
in Goa territory. Persons who were compelled 
to abandon Portuguese territory owing to 
religious persecutions at the hands of the 
Portuguese buried their treasures beneath the 
ground. Those who died during exile are said 
to have become bhuts or ghosts, and it is 
believed that they guard their buried treasures 
in tlie form of snakes.* 

The Hindus generally believe that the snakes 
who guard buried treasures do not allow any 
one to go near them. The snake frightens 
those who try to approach, but w]»en he wishes 

' School Master, Mitbav, Ratnagiri. 
3 School Master, Khopoli, Kolaba. 
s School Master, Pendur, Ratndgiri. 
7 Rao Siheb Shelke, Kolhapur. 

^ School Master, Kalshe, Ratnagiri. 
4 Rcio Saheb Shelke, Kolhapur. 
6 School Master, Apte, Panwel, Kolaba. 
' School Master, L'bh<<danda, Ratnagiri. 



to Jiiiiid <>v«T llic treasure to anybodj' ho goes 
to tliat jMTSoii at night, aiul liUs liiin in a dream 
tlial tlie treasure buried at such and sucli a 
place belongs to liini, and requests him to 
take il over. After th«' person lias taken 
possession of the treasure as requested, the 
.snake disappears from the spot.^ 

It is said that a snake whieh guards treasure 
is generally very old. white in complexion, ;uid 
lias long liair on its body .2 

Hindus worshij) the image of a snake made 
,)f Darhha grass or of silk thread on tlie Anant 
Chatuiiiashi day, i.e., the 14th day of the bright 
half of .Ishirin (Oelober). and observe that 
day .IS a holiday. J.egends oi' the exploits of 
the god are related with inusie .'ind singing on 
this day.' 

A snake festival is observed in tlie Nagesh- 
war temple at Awas in tlie Kolaba District on 
the night of the 14tl» day of tlw brigiit liall 
of Kdrtika (November). Nearly four hundred 
devotees of the god Shankar assemble in the 
temple, holding in their hands vet rasa r pa long 
<^ane sticks with .snake im.igts .at their t'lids. 
They advance dancing .iiid repe.iting certain 
words, and take turns round tlie temple till 
midnight. After getting the permission of the 
ehicf devotee, they scatter throughout the 
neighbouring villag«-.s with small axes in their 
hands, and cut down, and bring from the gar- 
dens, cocoanuts, plantains, -and other edible 
things that are seen on their way. They return 
to the temple .after two houirs, the last man 
being the chief devotee called Kuwarkdndya. 
The fruits -are then distributed among the 
people assembled at the tt'mple. Xobcxly inter- 
feres with them on this day in taking away 
cocoanuts and other fruits from the village 
gardens. On the next day they go dancing in 
the same maimer to the Kanakeshwar Iiill with 
the snake sticks in their li.inds."' 

In the Deccan no speci-al snake festiv-als like 
those described above are celebrated. But in 

tlie temples devoted to siKike deities, on the 
full moon day of Kdrtih, wliich is sacred to the 
snake deity, tlK' deitj' is worshipped with 
special pomp, and tl>e crests of the temples are 
illuminated on that night.'' 

The village cures for snakebite are : — 

1. Tlie use of charmed water and tin- 
repetition of mantras by .i sorcerer. 

2. The of certain roots .md herbs as 

3. The removal of tlie sufferer to the n<igli- 
bouriiig temple. 

4. Branding thr wound with lire. 

5. The drinking of soapnut juice, or of 
water in wliieli copper coins have been Iwiled 
by the patient, wlio is tlius iii.ade to vomit the 
snake pois«ii.'' 

In tl»e Deccan a person suffering from snake- 
bite is taken to .a villag*' temple, and the mini- 
strant is requested to give him Iioly water. 
The deity is also invoked. Thus keeping the 
person for one night in the temple, lie is carried 
to his house the following d.ay if cur<'d. The 
vows inad<' to the deity for tlie recovery of the 
person .are then fulfilled. Tliere is one iurabat, 
a tomb of AvaUa a Mahomedan saint, at 
Panhala where persons suffering from snake, 
bite are made to sit near the tomb .md it is 
said that they are cured. In some villages 
tliere are enchanted trees of Kadulimb where 
persons placed under tlie shade of such 
trees are cured of snakebites. Some people tie 
;i stone round the neck of tlie sufferer as soon 
.•IS he is better, repeating the words Adi Gtidi 
Imdm the name of .a Malumied;in s.iiiit. After 
recovery from stuikebite the person is taken to 
the mosque of the Adi Gitdi Imdm Sdheh, where 
the stone is untied Iwfore the tomb, .ind jdgri 
equal to the weight of the stone is offered. A 
feast is also given to the Mujawar oi minis- 
trant of the mosque. 'I'liere is at persent a 
famous enchanter — Mdiitriha — at Satiira who 
cures persons suffering from snakebite. It is 
said that he throws charmed water on the tH>dy 
of the sufferer, and in a few minutes the snake 

' School Master, Chawk, Koliiba. 
^ School Master, Pendur, Ratniigiri. 
j Riio Sitheb Sheike, Kolhapur. 

' School Master, Basani, Ratndgiri. 

* School Master, Cliawl, Koltiba. 

* School Master, Jambivali, Koluba. 



begins to speak througli tlie victim. The 
sorcerer enquires what tlie snake wants. Tlie 
snake gives reasons for biting the person. When 
any tiling thus asked for by the snake is 
offered, the victim comes to his senses, and is 
cured. There are many witnesses to the above 

At Mitbav in the Ratnagiri District chickens 
numbering from twenty to twenty-fiv^e are 
applied to the wound caused by the snakebite. 
A chicken lias the power of drawing out the 
poison from the body through the wound, but 
this causes the death of the chicken. The 
remedy above described is sure to be successful 
if it is tried within three hours of the 
person being bitten. There are several other 
medicines which act on the snakebite, but they 
must be given very promptlj'. There are some 
men in this village who give charmed wafer for 
snake or any other bites. Many persons 
suffering from snakebite have been cured by 
the use of mantras and charmed water. ^ 

Water from the tanks of Vetavare in the 
-Savantwadi State and Manjare in Goa territory 
is generally used as medicine for snakebite. It 
is believed that by the power of mantras a snake 
can be prevented from entering or leaving a 
particular area. This process is called 'sarpa 
bdndhane'. There are some sorcerers who can 
draw snakes out of their holes by the use of 
their mantras, and carry them away without 
touching them with their hands,^ 

At Adivare, in the Rajapur taluka, roots of 
■certain herbs are mixed in water and applied 
to the womid caused by the snakebite^ and 
given to the sufferer to drink.' 

At Naringre in the Ratnagiri District, persons 
sutiVring from snakebite are given the juice of 
Kadulimb leaves, and are kept in the temple 
of Hanumaii. The feet of the deity are 
washed with holy water, and the water is given 
to the victim to drink. ' 

A sn.ake is believed to have a white 
jewel or mani in its head, and it loses its life 
when this jewel is removed. This jewel has 
the power of drawing out the poison of 
snakebite. When it is applied to the wound, 
it becomes greeny but when kept in milk for 
sometime, it loses its greenness and reverts to 
its usual white colour. It gives out to the 
milk all the poison that has been .ibsorbed 
from the wound, and the milk becomes green. 
This jewel can be used several times as an 
absorbent of the poison of snakebite. The 
green milk must be buried under ground so 
that it may not be used again by any one 

It is believed that an old snake having long 
hair on its body has a jewel in its head. Thi.s 
jewel is compared with the colours of a 
rainbow. The snake can take this jewel from 
its head at night, and search for food in its 
lustre. Such snakes never come near the 
habitation of human beings, but always reside 
in the depth of the jungle. This species of 
snake is called Deva Sarpa, i. e., a snake 
belonging to a deity. It is related that a 
snake was born of a woman in the Kinkar's 
house at Tardal in the Sangli State, and 
another one in the Gabale's house at 

1 Rao Sdheb Shelke, Kolhapur. = School Master, Mitbav, Ratnigiri. 

3 School Master, Ubhadanda, Ratnagiri. * School Master, Adivare, Ratnagiri. 

5 School Master, Naringre, Ratnagiri. * School Master, Kalshe, Ratnagiri, 

' Rao Saheb Shelke, Kolhapur. 



Till- worship of totems, or Bevalcs, prevails 
nuiong Hindus in Wistcru India. The term 
Devalc is applied to the deity or deities 
worshipped at the beginning of a thread or 
a marriage ceremony. The ceremony is as 
follows: A small quantity of rice is put into 
a winnowing fan, and witli it six small sticks 
of the Umbar tree, each covered with mango 
leaves and cotton thread. These are worshipped 
as deities. Near the winnowing fan is kept earthen or copper vessel tilled with rice, 
turmeric, red powder,* betelnuts, sweet balls 
made of wheat flour, ghi and sugar ; and on 
the top of the vessel is a small sprig of mango 
.iiid a cocoamit covered with cotton thread. 
Tliis vessel is also worshipped as a deity, 
and offerings of sweet eatables are made to it. 
After the worship of this vessel, the regular 
ceremony of Punydhavachanu is performed. 
Twenty-seven Mdtrikds^ or village and local 
deities, represented by betelnuts arc consecrated 

in a new winnowing fan or a bamboo basket. 

Seven Mutrikds are made of mango leaves, six 

of which contain durva grass, and the seventh 

ilarhlta o-rass. Each of them is bound with 

,1 raw cotton thread separately. They are 

worshipped along with a Kalasha or a copper 

lota as mentioned above. This copper lota 

is filled with rice, betebiuts, turmeric, etc., a 

sprig of mango leaves is placed on the lota, 

and a ciK'oanut is put over it. The lota is 

.also l)ound with a cotton thread. Sandalpaste, 

rice flowers and durva grass are required for 

its worship. An oil lamp called /irn/i is waved 

roun<l the devak, the parents, and the boy or 

the girl whose thread or marriage ceremony is to 

be performed. A JSuivdsini is called and 
requested to wave this Arati, and the silver 

coin which is put into the Arati by the parents 

is taken iiy Jitr. Tl;e fatlier takes the 
winnowing fan and the mother takes the 
Kalasha, and Ihey are carried from the mandap 
to tlie deruk consecr.ited in the house. A 
lighted lauq) is kept cantinually burning near 
this devdk till the eomph tion of tlie ceremony. 
After coiMpliiion of the thread or marriage 
ceremony the devah is again worshipped, and 
the ceremony comes to an end. The deity in 
the devah- is requested to depart on the second 
or tlie I'onrtii day from the date of its con- 
secration. No mourning is obser\ed during 
the period the devak remains installed in tlie 

Among Marathas ,ind many of the lower 
classes in the R.itnagiri District the branch of 
a Trtf/, Kadamba, mango, or .in Apta tree is 
worshipped .is their devak or kul.^ 

Some Maratlii'is have a sword or a dagger 
as their devak. which is worshipped by them 
before coiiiineiicing the ritual of the marriage 

The family known as Rane at Naringre in 
the Dav.igad laluka of the Ratmigiri District, 
and tlie families known as Gadakari and 
Jadhava .it Mahvan, consider the J'ad or Banian 
tree as their devak^ and do not make use of its 
leaves. In the same manner, some people con- 
sider the Kadatnba tree sacred to their family. ^ 

There are some people among the Hindus 
in Weslern India whose surnames are derived 
from tlie names of animals and plant.s, sucli as 
Boke, Ldndage, Wdgh, Dukre, Kdrvale, Garud 
More Mhase, Rede^ Keer, Popat^ Ghode^ 
Sheldr Cdi/atunde, JVdghmdrc, SJidlunke, 
Bhende, Padtval, Wdlke, Apie, Amhekar, 
Pirn pal I h lire ^ Kelkar .and Kdlke. 

TIk' Hindius belie^e that a cow, a Jiorsc, and 
an elephant are sacred animals. Tlie cow is 
treated with special respect by tlie Hiudua 

. Scliool Master, Adivare, Katnagiri. ^School Master. Kilshe. Ratnagiri. 

' School Master, Achare, Ratnagin. 



ill general^ and the bull by the Lingayats and 
oihnen. The milk, the urine, and tl»e dung of 
,1 cow are used as medicines, and they are also 
given as offerings to the god in sacrifices. 

The Shelar family considers the sheep as 
their devak^ and they do not eat the flesh of a 
sheep. The Shalunke familj' respects the 
Shdlunki or sparrov.-. People belonging to the 
More family do not eat the flesh of a peacock 
as they consider it to be their dei'ali,^ 

The Bhandiiris whose surname is Padwal 
do not eat the vegetable of a snake-gourd or 

Hindus do not eat the flesh of the animal 
respected by them, and those who offer any 
fruit to their gttru as a token of respect do 
not eat that fruit in future. Some Hindus do 
not eat onions, garlic and the fruit of a palm 
tree. The fruit of a tree believed to be the 
devali of a family is not eaten b\' the members 
of that family. 

The families of Rava and Rwie do not take 
their food on the leaf of a Vad or Danian 
tree as they consider it to be tlieir devalc.^ 

There are some Hindu families in the 
Kolaba District who believe that their kul or 
totem consists of the tortoise and the goat, and 
they do not cat the flesh of sucli animals. A 
certain community of the J'aishyas or traders 
known as Swar believe that a jack tree or 
Plumas is their few?, and they do not use the 
leaves of that tree.* 

It is believed among the Hindus that the 
deity Satn-ai protects children for the first 
three months from their birth. The deity is 
worshipped on the fifth day from the birtli of 
a child, and if there occurs any omission or 
error in the worsliip of that deity, the child 
begins to cry, or does not keep good health. 
On such occasions the parents of the cliild 
make certain vows to the deity, and if the 
child recovers, the parents go to a jungle, and 
collect seven small stones. They then besmear 

the stones with red lead and oil, and worship 
them along with a she goat in the manner in 
whieli the vow was promised to be fulfilled.' 

The horse is connected with the worship of 
the god Khandoba because this animal is 
sacred to that deity, being his favourite 
vehicle. For this reason all the devotees or 
Bhakfas of Khandoba take care to worship the 
horse in order that its master, the god Khan- 
doba, may be pleased witli them. 

It is well known that the cow is considered 
as most sacred of all the animals by the 
Hindus, and the reason assigned for this 
special veneration is that all the deities dwell 
in the cow. 

The Xandi^ or a bullock made of stone, 
consecrated in front of the temple of Shiva, 
the Fdgh or a tiger at the temple of a goddess 
and cows and dogs in the temple of Dattatraya 
are worshipped by the Hindus. 

The mouse, being the vehicle of Ganpati the 
god of wisdom, is worshipped by the people 
along with that god. 

In the Konkan cattle are worshipped by the 
Hindus on tiie first day of Kdrtilca^ and they 
are made to pass over fire. 

The mountains having caves and temples of 
deities are generally worshipped by the 
Hindus. The Abucha Pahad, the Girnar, the 
Panchmadhi, the lirahmagiri, the Sahyadri, 
the Tungar, the Jivadancha dongar^ the Munja 
dongar at Jumiar, the Tugabaicha dongar^ the 
Ganesh Lene, and the Shivabai are the princi- 
pal holy moiuitains in the Bombay Presidency'. 

Mount Abu, known as the Abucha Pahad, is 
believed to be very sacred, and many Hindus 
go on a pilgrimage to that mountain. 

Hills are worshipped at Ganpati Pule 
and Cl»aul. At Pule there is a temple of the 
o-od Ganpati, the son of Shiva, and at Chaul in 
the Kolaba District there is a temple of the 
god Dattatraya. 

1 School Master, Anjarle, Ratnagiri. 
3 School Master, Fonde, Ratnagiri. 

- School Master, Achate, Ratnigiri. 
< School Master, Chauk, Kolaba. 

5 Rao Saheb Shelke, Kolhipur. 



Tlir place which produces sound when water 
is poured over it is considered to l)e holy, and 
is worshipped by tlie people. 

In the Decc'in, hills are worshipped by the 
people on tlie Xamk chaluidusln day in 
Dipaivdli, Htli day of the dark half of Ashtvin 
(October). The legend of this worship is 
that the god Shri Krislina lifted the Govardhan 
jnountain on this day, and protected the people 
of this world. A hill made of cowdung is 
worshipped at every liouse on the Narak 
■chattirdashi day."^ 

Stones of certain kinds are first considered 
as one of the deities, or as one of the chief 
heroes in the family, and then worshipped by 
the people. Many sucli stones are found 
worshipped in tlie vicinity of any temple. 

A stone coming out of the earth with a 
phallus or I'nigam of Shiva is worshipped by 
the Hindus. If such a liiignm lies in a deep 
jungle, it is worshipped by them at least once 
a year, and daily, if practicable, in the month 
of Adhikamds, an intercalary month which 
comes every third year.* 

The red stones found in the Narmada river 
represent the god Ganpati, and are worshipped 
by the people. 

A big stone at Piiulaka Tembha near Murud 
in the Ratnagiri District is worshipped by the 
people, who l)elieve it to Ix" the monkey god 
Hanumau or Maruti. All the stone images of 
gods that are called Sivayamhhu or self- 
existent are nothing but rough Stones of 
peculiar shapes. There are such sivnyambhn — 
natural-images — at Kelshi and Kolthare in the 
Ratnagiri District.^ 

There is a big stone at Palshet in the 
Ratnagiri District which is worshipped as 

Stones are sometimes worshipped by the 
people in the belief that they are Jiaunted by 
■evil spirits. We have for example a stoen 

1 Rdo S^heb Shelke, Kolbapur. 
3 School Master, Anjarle, Ratnagiri. 
5 School Master, Krilshe, Ratniigiri. 
' Rao Sdlieb Shelke, Kolhiipur. 

called Mora Dhonda lying by the seasliore at 
Malwan in the Ratnagiri District. It is 
supposed to be haunted by DevachdrJ' 

The stones which are once consecrated and 
worshipped as deities have to be continually 
worshipijcd, even when perforated. Tlie small 
round, white stone slab known as T'isknupada^ 
whicl» is naturally perforated, is considered to 
be holy, and is worship^Jed daily by the Hindus 
along with the other images of gods. Tlie 
holes in this slab do not extend right through.'' 

It is considered inauspicious to worship the 
fractured im-iges of gods, but the perforated 
black stone called Shdligrdm, taken from the 
Gandaki river, is considered very holy, and 
worshipped by the people. For it is brlieved 
to be perforated from its very bt-giiming. 
Every -S/ia^'gram has a hole in it, even when it 
is in the river.'' 

Broken stones are not worshipped by the 
people. But the household gods of the 
Brahmans and other higher classes whicli are 
called the Panchdyatan — a collection of tive 
gods — generally consist of five stones witii lioles 
in them,* 

No instances of human sacrifices occur in 
India in these days, but there are many 
practices and customs which appear to be the 
survivals of human sacrifices. These survivals 
are visible in the offerings of fowls, goats, 
buffaloes, and fruits like cocoanuts, brinjals, 
the Kohdle or pumpkion gourd and others. 

Human sacrifices are not practised in these 
days, but among the Karhada Brahmans there 
is a practice of giving poison to animals in 
order to satisfy their family deity. It is said 
that they used to kill a Brahman by giving 
him poisoiK'd food. 

It is believed that the people belonging to 
the caste of Karhada Brahmans used to offer 
human sacrifices to their deity, and therefore 
nobody relies on a Karhada Brahman in tliese 

2 School Master, Medhe, Kolaba. 

* School Master, Palshet, Ratnagiri. 

* School Master, Mokhilde, Thilna. 

8 School Master, Kalshe, Ratnagiri. 



days. There is a proverb in Muratlii wliicli 
means that a man can trust even a Kasdi 
or a butclier but not a Karhada. 

As they eamiol otter liuman sacrifices in 
tliese days, it is said that during the Navardtra 
Iiolidayst i, e., tl»e first nine days of tlie 
briglit half of Asiiwin (October), they oft'er 
poisoned food to crows, dogs and other 

At Kalshe in llie Malwaii tahika of the 
Batnagiri District, the servants of gods, i.e., 
the ministrants or the Bhopis of the temple 
prick tlieir breast with a knife on the Dasara 
•d.'iy, and cry out loudly the words ' Koya ' 
' Koya ' . Xo blood comes from the breast as 
the wound is slight. This .appears to be .1 
survival of luini'in sacrifice. - 

In the Bombriy Presidency, .ind more 
ispecially in tlie Konkan districts, fetish 
stones are generally worshipped for the 
purpose of averting evil .-md curing diseases. 
Jn every village stones arc founi sacred to 
spirit deities like Baliiroba, Chedoba, Kl>an- 
doba, M'hasoba, Zoting, Vetal, Jakhai, Kokai, 
Kalkai mid others. TI»e low class people such 
as Mahars, ifaiigs, etc., apply red lead and 
•oil to stones, and call them by one of the above 
names, and ignorant people are very much 
afraid of such deities. They believe that such 
deities have control over .-ill the evil spirits or 
glkosts. It is said that the spirit Vetal starts 
to take a round in a village on the night of the 
nomoon day of every month, accompanied by 
all the ghosts. When any epidemic prevails 
in. a village, people offer to these fetish stones 
ort'erings of eatables, cocoanuts, fowls .in ' 

There is a stone deity named Bhavai 
at Kokisare in the Bavada State, to whom 
vows are made by the people to cure diseases. 
As the deity is in the burning ground, it is 
Jiiturally believed that this is the abode of 

At Achare, in the Malwan taluka of the 
Ratnagiri District, the round stones known as 
Kshetrapal are supposed to possess the power 
of curing diseases, and are also believed to b<' 
tlie abode of spirits. ■• 

At Adivare, in. the Ratnagiri District, there 
is a stone named Mahdr Purukha which is 
worshipped by tlie people when cattle disease 
prevails, especially the disease of a large tick 
or the cattle or dog louse." 

At Ubhadand.i, in tlx- Ratnagiri District, 
there are some stones which are believed to 
be haunted by Vetal. Bhutnath, Rawalnath 
.ind such other servants of the god Shiva, 
■md it is supposed they have the power of 
curing epidemic diseases. People make vows 
to thtse stones when any disease prevails in tlie 

The Hindus generally consider as sacred all 
objects that are the means of their livelihood, 
and, for tliis reason, the oilmen worship their 
oil-mill, the Brahmans hold in veneration the 
sacred tlinad — Yadnopavit, — ;ind religious 
books, tlie goldsmiths consider their firepots 
as sacred, and do not toucii them with their 
feet. In case any one accidently happens to 
touch them with his foot, he apologises and 
bows to them. 

It is believed by the Hindus that the^ broom, 
the wiimowing fan^ the pdyali — a measure of 
four shers, the Samai or sweet-oil lamp, .i 
metal vessel, fire and Sahdn or the levigating 
slab should not be touched with foot. 

The metals gold, silver, and copper, the 
King's coins, jewels and pearls, corns, the 
Shdligrdm stone, the G,aiipati stone from the 
Narmada river, conch-shell, sacred aslies, 
elepliant tusks, the horns of an wild ox {Gava) , 
tiger skin, deer skin, milk, curds, ghi, cow's 
urine, Bel, basil leaves or Tiilsi, cocoanuts, 
betehiuts, and flowers are considered as sacred 
by the Hindus, and no one will dare to touch 
them with his foot. 

' School Master, Chawk, Kolaba. 
^ School Master, Fonde, Ratnagiri. 
5 School Master, Naringre, Ratnaoiri. 

- School Master, Kalshe, Ratnagiri. 
* School Master, .^chare, Ratnagiri. 
• .School Master, Ubhadanda, Ratnagiri. 



Hindus worship mii»ually on tlif Dasara day 
the arms aiid all tlif iiistrumenls nr iinpUiiniits 
bv which they earn tlieir livelihood. The corn | 
sievf, the wiiiiiowiiig basket, tlie hr(H)Ui, the 
rice-jK)iiiul<r, tin plough, the Airiita or wood 
bill, and otln r siiili implements ar<- worshipped 
on this day. The agriculturists respect their 
winnowing tans and corn sieves, and do not 
touch them with their feel. 

In tlK- Kolhapur District ill tli< instruments 
and implements are worshipijed hy the people 
one day previous to the Dasara holiday. This 
worship is called Khdndepujan. They also 
worship all agricultural instruments, and tie to 
them leaves of Pipal and mango trees.'^ 

A new winnowing fan is considered to be 
holy hy tlie Hindus. It is filled with rice, 
fruits, cocoanuts and hetehuits, and a Khana — a 
piece of bodiceclolh — is spread over it. It is 
then worshipped and given to a Brahman lady 
in fulfilment of certain vows, or on the occasion 
of the worship of a Brahman Dampafya or 
married pair. 

The broom is considered to be lioly by the 
Hindus. Red powder — Kunku — is applied to 
a new broom before it is taken into use. It 
should not be touched with the feet. 

At Rewadanda, in the Kolaba District, some 
people worship a wood-bill or Koyata on the 
6tli day from the birth of a child. The rice- 
pounder, or Musalj is worshipped by them as a 
devak at the time of thread and marriage 
ceremonies. - 

Fire is considered to be holy among the high 
class Hindus. It is considered as an angel 
that conveys the sacrificial offerings from this 
earth to the gods in heaven. It is considered 
as one of the Hindu deities, and worshipped 
daily by high class Hindus, A Braluuan has 

to worsliij) the fire every day in connection with 
tin ceremony J'aishwadeva — oblations of boiled 
rice and ghi given to tlie fire. It is also 
worshipped by the Hindus on special religious 

Fire is worsliipped at the time of 1 adnas or 
Sacrifices. Sacrifices .ire of five kinds. Ther 
are — 

Devai/adna_ Bltiitai/adna or Bruhmayadna^ 
Rishiyadiia or Atithiyadiia^ Piiriiyadna and 
Manushyayadna. The offerings of rice, ghi, 
firewood, Til or sesamum, Java or barley, etc . 
.are made in these yadnas_ It is also wor- 
shipped at the time of Shidvani or Upakarma — 
the ceremony of renewing the sacred thread 
annually in tin' montli of Shrdvan,^ 

Among the lower classes fire is worshipped 
on the Malidlaya or Shrdddha day. They 
throw oblations of food into tlie fire on that 

The fire produced by rubbing sticks of the 
Pipal or Shevari tree is considered sacred, and 
it is essentially necessary that the sacred fire 
required for the Agnihotra rites should In- 
produced in the manner described above. 

Agnihotra is .i perpetual sacred fire preser- 
ved in Agnihiinda^ — ,i Iiole in the gromid for 
receiving and preserving consecrated fire. A 
Brahman, who has to accept ihf Agnihotra, has 
to preser\e in liis house the sacred fire day ,iiid 
night after his thread ceremony, and to worship 
it three times a dav after takinir his balli. 
When an Agnihotri dies, his body is burnt by 
the people who prepare fire by rubbing sticks 
of Pipal wood together.* 

There are some Bralimans who keep the fire 
continuously burning in their houses only for 
(.'hdturmds or four montli* of the year. The 
fire which is preserved and worshipped for 
four months is called "Svtdria Agni'"^ 

1 Rao Siibeb Shelke, Kolliiipur. 

2 School Master/Iblirampur, Ratndgiri. 

■^ School Master, 

■ School Master, Bewadanda, Kolaba. 
* School Master. .\div?re, KatnSlgiri. 
Anjur, Thana. 



The following animals^ birds and insects are 
respected by the Hindus : — The cow, bullock, 
she-buffalo, Iwrse, elephant, tiger, deer, mouse, 
goat, ants aiul alligators; and among the birds 
the following are held sacred. — Peacock, swan, 
eagle and kok'd or cuckoo. 

Of all the animils the cow is considered to 
be tlie most sacred by Hindus. It is generally 
worshipped daily in the morning for the whole 
year, or at least for the Chdtunnds or four 
nionllis b;'gimiing from the 11th d ly of the 
briglil hilf of Ashddha to the Uth day of the 
bright half of the montl» of Kdrtika; and a 
special worship is offered to it in the evening 
on the 12tli day of the dark half of Asltrvin 

The cow is believed to hi tlie abode of all the 
deities and rishis. It is compared with tlie 
earth in its sacredness, and it is considered that 
when it is pleased it is capable of giving 
everything required for the maintenance of 
mankind, and for this reason it is styled the 
Kilmu Dlteiiu or the giver of desired objects. 
It is said that a person who walks round 
the cow at the time of its delivery obtains 
the punija or merit of going round the whole 
earth. The cow is even worsliipped by the 
god Vishnu. 

The cow is considered next to a mother, as 
little children and the people in general are 
fed by the milk of a cow. Some women among 
high class Hindus take a vow not to take their 
meals before worshipping the cow, and wlien 
the co^v is not available for worship, thej- draw 
in turmeric, white or red powder the cow's 
foot-prints and worship the same. At the 
completion of the vow it is worshipped, and 
then given as a gift to a Brahman. It is con- 
sidered very meritorious to give a Gopraddn — a 

gift of a cow along with its calf, to a Brahman. 
The sight of a cow in the morning is believed 
b.v all Flindus to be auspicious. 

The bulloci is respected by tlie people as it 
is tlie favourite vehicle of the god Shiva, and is 
very useful for agricultural purposes. The 
Nandi or bull is worshipped by Hindus. The 
bullock is specially worshipped on the 12th 
day of tlie bright half of Kdrtika. When 
performing the funeral rites of the dead, a bull 
is worshipped and set free. The bull thus set 
free is considered sacred by the people, and is 
never used again for agricultural or any other 
domestic purposes. 

In order to avoid calamities arising from the 
influence of inauspicious planets, Hindus wor- 
ship the she-buffalo, and offer it as a gift to a 
Brahman. Tlie siie-buffalo is compared with the 
Kdl Purusha or the god of Death, the reason 
being that Yama is believed to ride a buffalo. 
The Brahman wlio accepts this gift has to 
shave liis moustaclies and to undergo a certain 
penance. The cowherds sometimes worship the 
she-buffalo. As it is the veliicle of Yama, the 
buffalo is specially worshipped by people when 
an epidemic occurs in a village. In certain 
villages in the Konkan districts the buffalo is 
worshipped and sacrificed on the same day. 

The horse is the vehicle of the deity Khan- 
doba of Jejuri. It is worshipped on the Vijaya 
Dnshami or the Dasara holiday as in former 
days, on the occasion of the horse sacrifice or 

The elephant is the vehicle of the god Indra 
and is specially worshipped on the Dasara day. 
It is also believed that there are eight sacred 



tlephants posted at the tight directions. These 
.ire called Ashtadik-Palas, i.e., the protectors 
«)t the eiglit different direetions, and they are 
worshipped along with otlier deities on auspi- 
cious ceremonial occasions, like Wtddings. 
thread-girding, etc. 

Tlic deer and the tiger are considered to be 
lioly by Hindus, and tiieir skins arc used by 
Brahmans and ascetics wliile performing their 
austerities. Tiie deer skin is used on the 
■occasion of thre;id girding, A small piece of 
ihe deer skin is tied to Ihe neck of tlie boy 
along with the new sacred thread. 

The mouse, being tlu- \(liich' of the god 
Ganpati, is worshipped along with that deity 
on the GaHCi/i Chaturthi day, the fourth day 
of the briglit half of Bhddrapada. 

The goat is believed to be holy for sacrificial 
purposes. It is worshijipcd at the time of its 
sacrifice, which is pcrl'oruud to gain the favour 
of certain deities. 

The ass is generally considered as unholy by 
the Hindus, and its mere touch is held to cause 
pollution. But certain lower class Hindus like 
the Lonjiris consider it sacred, .and worship it 
-on the Gokiil Ashthami d.iy (8th day of the 
dark half of Shrdwan). 

The dog is believed to be an iuearn.ition of 
.til* deity Khandoba, and it is respected as the 
favourite animal of the god Dattatraya. But 
it is not touched by high class Hindu.s. 
It is considered a great sin to kill :i eat. 
All domestic animals .ire worshipped by the 
Hindus on the morning of the first day of 
Mar gash irslia ( December) . 

On this day the horns of these animals arc 
washed witli w.irni water, painted with red 
colours, .and .i lighted lam)) is passed round 
Iheir faces. Tliey are feasted on this day as it 
IS considered to be the gala day (Divdli holiday) 
«>f the animals. 

Hindus consider it meritorious to feed ants 
.nid fish and to throw gr.iiii to the birds. Ants 
are fed by llie people scattering sugar and 
iiour on the ant-hills. It is believed that, by 

feeding the ants with sugar or flour, a person 
obtains th<- I'lnii/u or merit of saha-^rahkojany 
i.e., of giving ;i feast to ;i thousand Brahmans. 

AUig.ators are M-orshi|)pid as w tlir diiti's 
l)y the Hindus. 

Till' peacock is tin- lavouriti vehicle of 
."^ar.'isw.iti, the (iodiiess of Le.iming, .-md it is 
tiierefore respect<d by tlx' i)eopli-. 

Tlie swan is tin' \<lncl< of Br.ihmi, thr god 
of creation. 

The eagle is the vehicle of the god Vislum, 
and is a favourite devotee of that dt-ity. It is 
therefore Ijeld sacred by Hindus. 

Tlie cuckoo or Kokil is believed to be .m 
incarn.ition ol the goddess Parwati. Tills bird 
is specially worshipped l>y Iiigli caste Hindu 
women for the period of one montli on tlie 
occasion of .a special festival called tiie 
festival of the cuckoos, or Kolcila vrala. whicli 
is held in the month of Ashddlm .-it interv.ils 
of twenty years. 

The crow is generally held inauspicious by 
Hindus, but as the manes or pittas are said to 
assume the form of crows, these birds are res- 
pected in order lhe_\ may be able to partake 
of the food ofl'ered to the dead .ancestors in the 
dark li.ilf of Bhddrapada called ntnipakslta. 

It is necessary tin oblations given in 
performance of the funeril rites on the tenth 
day .after tht dc.itli of a person should be latt n 
bv the erow. But if tiie crow refuses to touch 
these obl.ations, it is believed llial the soul of the 
dead not obtained salvation; and hence it is 
conjectured that cert.ain wishes of tlie dead liavi- 
remained iiiitulfillid. Tlie son or the relatives 
of the tlun l.ikc water in the ea\ity of 
their right hand, and solemnly promise to fulfil 
the wishes of the ^^■|n n this is done, the 
crow begins to ».it the food. 

The li.irsli sound of a crow is laktn .is .a sure 
sign of an impinding misli.ap. 

Tlie dog, eat, pig, ass, buff.ilo,, hhdht, an 
old female jackal, liz.ird. .and the birds cock, 
crow, kite^ vulture, owl, bat, .and pingla .arc 
eonsidend .as unholy and inauspicious by Hindus. 



Chetak is an art secretly leamt by women. 
It is a form of tlie black art. A woman well 
versed in the mantras of chetak can do any 
mischief she chooses. She can kill a child or 
turn any person into a dog or other animal by 
the power of her incantations. The diet akin 
can remove all the hair from the head of a 
woman, or scatter filth, etc. in a person's house, 
make marks of crosses with marking nuts on 
all the clothes, or play many other such tricks 
without betraying a trace of the author of the 
mischief. The chetakins are able to mesmerize 
a man and order him to do anything they want. 
A Chetakin or witch cannot herself appear in 
the form of an animal. 

They follow revolting forms of ceremonies. 
AU witches who have learnt the black art meet 
at night once a monthi on the Amavdsya day or 
no moon day of every month, at a burning ground 
outside the village. On sucli occasions they go 
quite naked, and apply turmeric and red powders 
to the body and forehead. While coming to 
the cremation groimd they bring on their 
heads burning coals in an earthen pot called 
Kondi, At this meeting they repeat their 
mantras, and take care that none are forgotten. 
After completing the repetition of the mantras, 
they go round the village and return to their 
respective houses. They have no special 
haunts or seasons. 

In the KoUiapur District the woman who is 
io possession of a chetak is called chetakin. 
The chetak is said to abide by her orders. It 

( is believed to bring corn and other things from 
1 houses or harvesting grounds. It is seen only 
by its mistress the chetakin. The belief that the 
chetakins can turn a person into the form of 
an animal does not prevail in this district. They 
do not wander from one place to anotlier. 
The chetakin has to go once a year to the temple 
of the deity from wliom the chetak has been 
j brought, and to pay tlie amiual tribute for the 
use of that chetak or servant spirit.'' 

There are no witches in the Ratnagiri District. 
It is said that there are some at Kolwan in the 
Thana District. They are generally found 
among Thakars. Some of them come to the 
Ratnagiri District, but though no one can tell 
anything about their powers, ignorant people 
are very much afraid of them.^ It is believed 
that thej' can turn persons into animals by means 
of their incantations. The person once charmed 
by their mantras is said to blindly abide by 
their orders. It is also believed that they can 
ruin anybody by their magic. 

There are no witches at Rai in the Thana 
District. The woman who can influence e^il 
spirits to do harm to others is called a BhutdU. 
It is said that the Bhutdlis assemble at the 
funeral ground in a naked state on the f uU-moon 
day and on the Amdvasya^ or the last daj' of 
every month, to refresh their knowledge of the 
black art.^ 

A witch has dirty habits and observances. 
Tue cliief sign for detecting a witch or chetakin 
is a foam or froth that appears on the lips of 

Rao Saheb Shelke, Kolhapur. - School Master, Anjarle, Ratnigiri. 

^ School Master, Rai, Thana. 



lier moutti wlicn she is asleep. The only means 
to guard against her witchcraft is to remain on 
friendly terms with her, and not to hurt her 
feelings on any occasion. People generally keep 
a watch over the actions of a woman who is 
suspected to be a witch, and if she is found 
practising her black art, and is caught red- 
lianded, people then pour into her mouth water 
brought from tlu' slioe-maker's earthen pot or 
kiindi. It is believed that, when she is compelled 
to drink such water, her black art becomes 
ineffective. 1 

In the Thana District it is believed that the 
skin roiuid the eyes of a witch is always black, 
her eyes have an intoxicated appearance, her 
nails are generally parched and have a darkish 
colour, and the lower portions of her feet seem 
to be scraped. When any sorcerer gives out the 
name of such a Bhufdli, slifi is threatened by 
the people that, should she continue to give 
trouble in the village, her own black art or 
Another spirit would be set against her ; and she 
then ceases to give trouble. 2 

There are some sorcerers in the Thana District 
who can move a small brass cup or vdti by the 

power of their magic. They can detect a witch 
by the movement of this vessel. Wlien the brass 
vessel or vdti readies the house of a witch, it 
at once settles upon the witch's Ivead. She is 
then threatened by tlie people that she will be 
driven out of the village if found practising 
licr black art.''' 

In the Kolhfipur District, when the people 
come to know of the existence of a witch in 
their village, they take special precautions at 
the time of harvest. They arrange to harvest 
a dift'erent kind of grain to the one selected for 
harvesting by the witch. After some time they 
go to the field of the witch, and discover whether 
there is a mixture of grain in her field. If they 
are convinced of the fact, they take further 
precautions. In order to avoid being troubled 
by the chetah, they keep an old, worn out shoe 
or sandal and a charmed copper amulet under 
the eaves at the main door of their houses, or 
make crosses with marking nut on both sides 
of a door. At some places cJiunam spots or 
circles are marked on. the front of a house, the 
object being to guard against the evil effects of 
the chetak's tricks.* 

' School Master, Khopoli, Koldba. 
3 School Master, Padghe, Thana. 

- School Master, R4i, Thdna. 
* Eao Saheb Shelke, Kolhapur. 



Offerings of cocoanuts, fowls or goats arc 
annually made to the spirits that guard the 
fields. They are generally made at the time 
of beginning a plantation or the harvesting of 
a crop. When making these offerings, the 
farmers pray to the god to give prosperous 
crops every year. They prepare their cooked 
food in tlie field on the first harvesting day 
and offer it as naivedya (god's meal) along 
with the above mentioned offerings. ^^ 

At Bandivade in the Ratnagiri District, while 
commencing the sowing of crops the farmers 
worship a certain numl«'r of bullocks made of 
rice floor and tlien throw them into the pond or 
river adjoining the fields. On other occasions, 
offerings of cocoanuts and fowls are sacrificed to 
the deities that protect the fields. Some people 
give a feast to the Brahmans at the end of the 
harvesting season. - 

Ceremonies in connection with ploughing, 
etc., are not observed for all the lands. But fields 
which are supposed to lie haunted by evil spirits 
are worshipped at the lime of ploughing, and 
the evil spirits are propitiated, cocoanuts, sugar, 
fowls or goats are offered to the local deities or 
devachdrs. There is a custom of worshipping 
in the fields the heaps of new corn at the time 
of harvest, and this custom generally prevails 
in almost all the Konkan districts.* 

At Fonde in the Ratnagiri District the 
Shitvar generally composed of boiled rice mixed 
with curds is kept at the corner of a field at I 
the time of reaping the crops. The Shitvar is j 
sometimes composed of the offerings of fowls { 
and goats.* This ritual is also known by the 
name Chorawa.^ 

At Dasgav in the Kohiba District, there is i 
a custom of carrying one onion in the corn ! 
taken to the fields for sowing and placing five j 
handfuls of corn on a piece of cloth before J 
beginning to sow the corn. At the time of 

Ldivani or plantation of crops a 'fair called 
Palejafra is held by the people, and every 
farmer breaks a cocoanut in the field at the 
time of plantation or Idvani of crops. At the 
time of harvesting it is customary with many 
of the cultivators in the Konkan to place a 
cocoanut in the field and to thrash it by the first 
bmidle of crop se\eral times before the regular 
operation of thrashing is begun. At the close of 
the harvest the peasants offer cocoanuts, fowls 
or a goat to the guardian deity of the field." 

At Vada in the Thana District the ploughs 
are worsliipped by the farmers on Saturday and 
then carried to the fields for ploughing. At 
the time of harvesting, the wooden post to which 
the bullocks are tied is worshipped by them and 
at the close of the harvest the heap of new 
corn is worshipped and cocoanuts are broken 
over it.^ 

In the Kolhapur District the farmers worship 
the plough before beginning to plough the land. 
At the time of sowing the corn they worship 
the Kuri an implement for sowing corn. At 
the time of Ropani or transplanting the crops 
they split a cocoanut, and worship the stone 
consecrated b\- the side of the field after bes- 
mearing it with red powders, and make a vow of 
sacrificing a goafc for the prosperity of their 
crops. At the time of harvesting they also 
worship the heap of new corn and after giving 
to the deity offerings of cocoanuts, fowls or 
goats they carry the corn to their houses.' 

In the Konkan districts the \-illage deity is 
invoked to protect the cattle. People offer 
fowls and cocoanuts in the annual fair of a 
village deity, and request her to protect their 
cattle and crops. They have to offer a goat or 
buffalo to the deity every third year, and to 
hold annual fairs in her honour. Tlie procession 
of balj is one of the measures adopted for 
averting cattle diseases.® 

» School Master, KhopoH, Kolaba. - School Master, Bandivade, Ratnagiri. 

' School Master, Devgad, Ratnagiri. * School Master, Fonde, Ratnagiri. 

5 School Master. Ubhadanda, Ratnagiri. " School Master, Dasgdv, Kolaba. 

'! School Master, Vada, Th;ina. ' Rao Saheb Sheike, Kolhiipur. 

5 School Master, Khopoli, Kolaba, 


rOLKLOUK OF Till-: KOXK.l.y 

When tliere was scarcity of rain the Hindus 
lornierly invoked Indra, the god of rain, by 
means of Yadnyas or sacrifices, but such sacri- 
fices are now rarely peri'ornnd as lliey are very 
costly. The general method of ensuring rain- 
fall in these days is to drown the Lingam of 
the god Shiva in water and to offer prayers to 
tliat deity. 1 

The following rural rite.s are intended to 
ensure sunshine and to elieck excessive rain. 
A man born in the month of Fdlgun (March) 
is requested to collect rain water in llie leaf of 
the Alu plant, and the leaf is then tied to a 
stick and kept on tlie roof of a house. Burning 
coals are also tlirown into rainwater after passing 
them between the legs of a person born in the 
month of Fdlgun.- 

In order to protect the crops from wild pig 
the people of Unibergaon in the Thdna District 
post in their fields twigs of Ayan tree on the 
Ganesli Ckaturthi (fourth day of the bright 
half of Bhddrapada or September) day every 

In the Kolhapur District the deities Tamj ai 
Tnngdi, and Waghai are invoked by the villa- 
gers for the protection of cattle. When the 
vattle disease lias disappeared the people ofi'er 
cocoanuts and other offerings to these deities. 
The potltTs and the Cliudbude Josliis observe 
the foHowing ceremony for causing rainfall. 
A lingam or phallus of Shiva made of mud is 
conseer.ated on a wooden board or pdt^ and a 
naked boy is asked to Iiold it over his liead. 
The boy carries it from house to house and the 
inmates of the houses pour water over the pli.illus. 
The iirahmans and the high class Hindus pour 
water on the Vingam at the temple of the god 
Shiva continuously for several days. This is 
called Rudrdhhisheha. It is a religious rite in 
■which eleven Brahmans are seated in a temple 
to repeat the prayers of tlu; god Sliiv;i, 

In order to scare noxious animals or insects 
from the fields, the owners of the fields throw 
charmed rice round the boundaries of their 

> School Master, Fonde, Ratndgiri. 
' School Master, Umbergdon, Thiina. 
5 School Master, Chinchani, Tlijina. 
' School Master, Ddbhol, Ratnagiri. 

fields. The figure of a tiger made of dry 
leaves of sugarcane is posted at a conspicuous 
place in the fields for protecting the crops of 
sugarcane. ^ 

Great secrecy is required to be observed on 
the occasion of the special puja of Shiva whieli 
is performed on the first day of the bright half 
of the month of Bhddrapada (September). 
This rite is called Maunya vraia or silent wor- 
shij}, and should be perl'orm d only b.v the male 
members of the family. On this day all tlie 
members of the family have to remain silent 
while taking their meals. Women do not speak 
while cooking, as the food which is to be offered 
to the god must be cooked in silence. ^ 

Newly married girls have to perform the 
worship of Mangala Gauri successively for the 
first five years on every Tuesday in the month 
of Shrdwan (August), and it is enjoined that 
lliey should not spL'ak while taking their meals 
on that day. Soms people do not speak while 
taking their meals on everj-Monday of Shrdwan^ 
and others make a vow of observing silence and 
secrecy at their meals every day. All Briihmans 
have to remain silent when goitig to the closet 
and making water.*' 

Certain persons observe silence at their meals 
during the period of four months {CliAtunnds) 
commencing from the 1 1th day of the bright 
half of Ashddhtt (July) to the 11th day of the 
l)riglit half of Kdrtilc (November). Certain 
classes of Hindus observe the penance of secrecy 
in the additional month that occurs at the lapse 
of every third year.'' 

Silence is essential at the lime of performing 
certain austerities such as Sandhya^ worsliipping 
the gods, and the repetition of the Brahma Gd- 
yalri mantra and other such mantras. Secrecy 
is specially observed when a disciple is initiated 
by his Guru or spiritual guide with the sacred 
mantras or incantations.* 

Secrecy and silence are essential when learn- 
ing the mantras on snakebite, on evil eye and the 
evil spirit of VetiVl. All followers of the Shakta 

' School Master, Naringre, Ratnjlgiri. 

* Riio Siiheb Sbelke, Kolhfipur. 

* School Master, Dahjinu, Thiina. 

^ School Master, Fonde, Ratniigiri. 



sect must worship llie goddess (Durga) very 
secretly. Silence is also observed by people in 
welcoming to their liomes and worshipping the 
goddess Piirvati or Gauri in the bright half of 
Bhddrapada every year.^ 

At Vade in the Thana District, one day 
previous to the planting of rice crops the farmer 
has to go to his field even before day break with 
£ve balls of boiled rice, cocoanuts and other 
tilings. There he worships the guiardian deity 
of the Held and buncs the balls of rice under- 
ground. He has to do it secretly and has to 
remain silent during the whole period. He is 
also forbidden to look behind while going to the 
field for the purpose. - 

Secrecy and silence are observed when per- 
forming the rites of Chetulcs and evil spirits or 
ghosts. Widow remarriages among the lower 
classes are performed secretly. The pair 
wishing to be remarried is accompanied by a 
Brahman priest and the marriage is performed 
apart from the house. The priest applies red 
lead (Kunhu) to the forehead of the bride and 
throws grains of rice over their heads and a 
stone mortar or pata is touched to the backbone 
of the bride. The priest then turns his face 
and walks away silently.' 

The HoU is a religious festival. ' It is 
aimually celebrated in memorj' of the death of 
Kamdev the God of Love who was destroyed 
by the god Shankar on the fuU moon day of 
Fdlgun (March). The object of this festival 
appears to have been a desire to abstain from 
lust by burning in the Holt fire all vicious 
thoughts and desires. As a rule, females do 
not take any part in this festival. 

In the Konkan districts the annual festival 
of HoU begins from the fifth day of the bright 
half of Fdlgun (March). Boys from all the 
localities of a village assemble at a place ap- 
pointed for the HoU. The place appointed for 
kindling the HoU is not generally changed. 
The boys then go from house to house asking 
for firewood, and bring it to the HoU spot. 
They arrange the firewood and other combustible 
articles around the branch of a mango, betelnut 
or a Sdwar tree in the pit dug out for the 
purpose and then set it on fire. After kindling 

the sacred fire they take five turns round the 
HoU accompanied with the beating of drums and 
raise loud cries of obscene words. After this 
they play the Indian games of Aiydpdtya and 
Khokho and occasionally rob the neighbouring 
people of their firewood and other combustible 
articles. At the close of tiiese games they daub 
their foreheads with sacred aslies gathered from 
the Holi fire. They consider these ashes espe- 
cially auspicious and carry them home for the 
use of the other members of their families. 
This process is continued every night till the 
close of the fullmooii day. Elderly persons 
take part in this festival only during the last 
few days. 

On the fullmoon day all the males of the 
village, including old men, start after sunset for 
the HoU spot, collecting on their way pieces of 
firewood from all the houses in the locality and 
arrange them in tlie mimier described above. 
After having arranged the HoU^ the officiating 
priest recites sacred verses and the pnja is 
performed by the mdnkari of the village. This 
mdnkari or pdtil is either the headman or some 
other leading person of the village and to him 
belongs the right of kindling the HoU fire first. 
Some persons kindle a small HoU in front of 
their houses and worship it individually, but 
they can take part in the public HoU, In the 
towns the Holis of different localities are kindled 
separately while in small villages there is only 
one for every village. 

At Vijayduirg in the Ratnagiri District a hen 
is tied to the top of a tree or a bamboo placed 
in the pit dug out for kindling the HoU fire. 
The fowl tied to the top of the bamboo is called 
Shit. A small quantity of dry grass is first 
burnt at the bottom of this tree when the Mahars 
beat their drums. The Shit (fowl) is then 
removed from the tree after it is half burnt 
and taken by the Mahars. The Holi fire is 
then worshipped and kindled by tJie Gurav. 
Worshipping and kindling the HoU and taking 
the Shit (fowl) are considered as high honours. 
Occasionally quarrels and differences arise 
over this privilege and they are decided by the 
village Panch.* 

1 School Master, Chauk, Kolaba. 
3 Rao Saheb Shelke, Kolhapur. 

2 School Master, Vside, Thana. 

* School Master, Poladpur and Vijaydurg. 



Alter Uif kindling of tlu- UoH tlic people 
assembled tliere offer to the Uoli a Naivedya 
(fTod's meal) of poli — a sweet cake made of 
Jagri^ wheat flour .ind gram pulse. Cocoa- 
nuts from all tlie liouses in the village are 
thrown into this sacred fire. Some of these 
cocoanuts are afterwards taken out of the 
sacred fire, cut into iiieecs, mixed with sugar 
and arc distributed among tJie people assemb- 
led as prasud or favoured gift. Lower 
classes of Hindus offer a live goat to the 
Holi, take it out when it is Jialf burnt and 
feast thereon. 

On the night of the fullmoon day and the 
first day of the dark half of Fdlguii, the 
people assembled at the Holi fire wander 
about the village, enter gardens and steal 
plantains, cocoanuts and other garden produce. 
Robbery of things committed during these 
days is considered to be pardonable. Some 
people take advantage of this opportunity for 
taking revenge on their enemies in this respect. 
The fire kindled at the Holi on the fullmoon 
day is kept constantly burning till the JRang- 
panchami day i. f., fifth day of the dark 
half of Fdlgun. Next morning i. c, on the 
first day of the dark half of Fdlgun, the 
people boil water over that fire and use it for 
the purpose of bathing. It is believed that 
water boiled on the sacred fire has the power 
of dispelling all the diseases from the body. 
People go on dancing in the village and sing 
songs for the next five days. They generally 
sing Ldvanis, a kind of ballad, during this 
festival. Among these dancers a boy is 
dressed like a girl and is called Rddha. This 
Rddha has to dance at every house while tiic 
others repeat Ldvanis. 

The second day of the dark half of Fdlgun 
is called Dhulvad or dust day when peo^jle 
start in procession through the village, and 
compel the males of every house to join tli<- 
|>arty. They thus go to the Holi fire and 
raise loud cries of obscene words throwing 
mud and ashes upon each other. They after- 
wards go to the river or a pond to take their 
bath at noon, time and then return to their 
hoii«-s. The third day of the dark half is 
*nlso spent liki- tin- previous one with a .slight 

difference wliich is that cow dung is used in- 
stead of mud. This day is called Shenwad 
day. On the fourth day the Dhunda Rakslia- 
hasin (a demon goddess) is worshipped by the 
people, and the day is spent in making merry 
and singing obscene songs called Ldvanis. The 
fiftli day of the dark half is known as Rang- 
panchaini day and is observed by tlie people 
in throwing coloured water upon each otlier. 
Water in which Kusumha and other colours 
are mixed is carried in large quantity on 
bullock carts through the streets of a city and 
sprinkled on the people passing through 
streets. On this day the sacred fire of the 
Holi is extinguished by throwing coloured 
water over it. This water is also tlirown upon 
the persons assembled at the Holi. The money 
collected as post during this period is utilised 
in feasting and drinking. 

At Ibhrampur in the Ratmigiri District the 
image of cupid is seated in a palanquin and 
carried with music from the temple to the Holi 
ground. The palanquin is then jjlaced on a 
certain spot. The place for thus depositing 
the image of the god is called Sahan.i At 
Naringre there is a big stone called Holdev 
1 which is Worshipped by the people before kindl- 
ing the Holi fire.2 After the kindling of the 
sacred fire the palanquin is lifted from the 
Sdltdn^ and turned round tl;e Holi fire with 
I great rejoicings. The palanquin is then car- 
ried through the village and is first taken to the 
house of a Mdnkari^ and then from house to 
house during the next five days. The inmates 
of the houses worship the deity in the palanquin 
and offer cocoanuts and other fruits and make 
certain vows. The palanquin is taken back to 
the temple on the fiftli day of the dark half of 
Fdlgun when on its way guldl or red powder is 
thrown ovi r the image and on the people who 
accompany it." 

Among high class Hindus Uie thread girdi'g 
ceremony of a boy is performed when he attains 
puberty. The girls are generally married a 
an e.arly age, and when a girl attains puberty, 
sugar is distributed among the friends and 
relatives of her husband. Slie is tlicn seated 
in a Makhar — a gaily dressed frame. Dislies 
I of sweets which are brought by tlie girl's 

' School Master, Ibhrampur, Ratnagiri. - School Master, Naringre, Ratnsigiri. 

5 School Master, Ibhrampur, Ratnagiri. 



parents and the relatives of her husband are 
given to her for the first three days. She 
takes her bath on the fourth day accompanied 
by the playing of music and the beating of 
drums. Sweetmeats in dishes are brought by 
tlie relatives till the day of Rutushanti (the 
first bridal night). The Garbhdddn or Rutu- 
shanti ceremony is one of the sixteen cere- 
monies that are required to be performed 
during the life of every Hindu. This cere- 
mony is performed within tlie first sixteen 
days from the girl's attaining lier puberty, the 
4t]i, 7th, 9th, nth and the 13th being consi- 
dered inauspicious for this purpose. While 
performing this ceremony the following three 
rites arc required to be observed. They are 
XSanpatipujan or the worship of the god Gan- 
pati^ P unhydhavachan or the special ceremony 
for invoking divine blessings and yavagraha- 
shdnti the ceremony for propitiating the nine 
planets. The ritual of this ceremony is as 
follows : — 

The husband and the wife are seated side by 
side on wooden boards to perform the above 
three rites. Tlie Kadali pujan or plantain tree 
worship is performed by the pair. The sacred 
fire or Homa is required to be kindled. The 
juice of the Durwa grass is then poured into the 
right nostril of the bride by her husband. This is 
intended to expel all diseases from the body of 
the girl and to secure safe conception. Tliey 
are then seated in a Makhar^ and presents of 
clothes, ornaments etc., are made by the parents 
of the girl and other relatives. After this the 
husband fills the lap of the girl with rice, a 
eocoanut, five betelnuts, five dry dates, five 
almonds, five plantains and five pieces of 
turmeric. The girl is then carried to a temple 
accompanied by the playing of music. Agrand 
feast is given to the friends and relatives at 
the close of this ceremony. 

The Hindus generally make various kinds 
of vows in order to procure offspring or with 
some other such object, and fulfil them when 
they succeed in getting their desire. The fol- 
lowing are the different kinds of vows made. 
They offer cocoanuts, sugar, plantains and 
other fruits, costly new dresses and ornaments 
to the deities, and give feasts to Brahmans. 

Special ceremonies called Laghurudra and 
Mahdriidra in honour of Shi\a the god of des- 
truction are also performed. Sweetmeats such 
as pedhas etc. are offered to the gods in fulfil- 
ment of vows. Some people make vows to 
observe fasts, to feed Brahmans, and to distri- 
bute coins and clothes to the poor ; while 
others hang forana-wreaths of flowers and 
mango leaves — on the entrance of the temple 
and hoist flags over it. Rich people erect new 
temples to different Hindu deities. Some ob- 
serve fasts to propitiate the goddess Chandika 
and worship her during Navardtra the first nine 
days of the bright half of Ashvin (October) 
and others offer fowls and goats to their fa- 
vourite deities. Women make it a vow to 
walk round the Audumbar or Pi pal tree, and 
to distribute cocoanuts, sugar, jagri, copper or 
silver equal to the weight of their children. 

Vows are made by people with the object of 
securing health, wealth and "children and other 
desired objects such as education, etc. They are 
as follows : — 

Performing the worship of Slni Satya 
Narayan, offering clothes and ornaments to the 
temple , deities, hanging bells, constructing a 
foot path or steps leading to the temple of the 
special deity. ^ Vows are also made to ob- 
tain freedom from disease or such other calami- 
ties. When any person in the family becomes 
ill or when a sudden calamity befalls a family 
an elderly member of the family goes to the 
temple of a deity and makes certain vows 
according to his means, fulfilling them as soon 
as the calamity or disease has disappeared.^ 

Vows are usually to perform acts of bene- 
volence. These consist in distributing cocoa, 
nut mixed in sugar, giving feasts to Brahman 
priests, observing fasts on Saturday, Tuesday 

' and Sunday, offering clothes aiid Ornaments to 
deities building new temples and guest houses 

! (dharvishdlds), digging out new wells and in 
distributing clothes and food to the poor.^ 

I At Khopoli in the Kolaba District, people 
who have no children or whose children die 
shortly after birth make a vow to the Satwai 
deity whose temple is at a short distance from 
Khopoli. The vow is generally to bring the 
child to the darshana (sight) of the deity and 

1 School Master, Fonde, Ratntigiri. 

3 School Master, 

- School Master, liankavli, Ratnagiri. 
Vijaydurg, Ratnagiri. 



to feed live or more (married) Briiliman pairs. In tlif Konkan districts there are some per- 
Sucli vows are fulfilled after the birth of a ' sons who practise black art of several kinds 
child. Some worship the god Satya Nan'iyaii such as Chetak, Jdran, Mdian and Uchdtan. 
OD a grand scale and others propitiate the god Chetak is a kind of evil spirit brought from 
Shiva hv the ceremony of Abhisheka (water the temple of the goddess Itahii of the Kon- 
spriiikllng).! Some offer nails mad<- of gold kan districts. It is brought for a fixed or 
or silver to the goddess Shitala aftir the re- limited period, and an annual tribute is re- 
covery of a child suffering from small pox. quired to be paid to the goddess for the ser- 

Eyes and otlier parts of the body made of 
gold and silver are also occasionally offered in 
fulfilment of vows. People abstain from eating 
certain things till the vows are fulfilled. - 

Vows are made in times of difficulties and 
sorrow. The person afflicted with sorrow or 
misfortune prays to his favourite deity and 
promises to offer particular things or to per- 
form special ceremonies, and fulfils his vows 
when his desired objects are attained. The 
ceremonies commonly observed for these pur- 
poses are the special pujds of Satya Narayan 
and Satya Vinayak. Native Christians make 
their vows to their saints and Mot-Mavali 
(Mother Mary) in the taluka of Salsette." 
There is a shrine of the god Shankar at 
Kanakeshwar a village on the sea side two 
miles from Mitbav in the Ratnagiri District. 
Many years ago it so happened that a rich 
Mahomedan merchant was carrying his mer- 
chandise in a ship. The ship foundered in a 
storm at a distance of about two or three 
miles from Kanakeshwar. When the vessel, 
seemed to be on the point of sinking the 
merchant despairing of his life and good.s, 
made a vow to erect a nice templa for the 
Hindu shrine of Kanakeshwar if he, his vessel 
and its cargo were saved. By the grace of 
God the vessel weathered the storm and he 
arrived safely in his country with the merch- 
andise. In fulfilment of this vow he erected 
a good temple over the shrine of Shri Shan- 
kar at Kanakeshwar, which cost him about 
rupees six thousand. This temple is in good 
condition to the present day. Many such 
vows are made to special deities. When the 
people get their desired objects they attribute 
the success to the favour of the deity invok- 
ed, but when their expectations are not 
fulfilled they i)lame their fate and not the 


Another kind of black art wideh' practis- 
ed in the Konkan districts is known by the 
name of Miith mdrane. In this art the sor- 
cerer prepares an image of wheat flour, and 
worships it with flowers, incense, etc. A lemon 
pierced with a number of pins is then placed 
before the image. The sorcerer begins to 
pour spoonfuls of water mixed with Jngri on 
the face of the image, and repeats certain 
mantras. Meanwhile, the lemon graduallj' 
disappears and goes to the person whose 
death it is intended to secure. The person 
aimed at receives a heavy blow in the chest 
and at once falls to the ground vomitting 
blood. Sometimes he is known to expire 
instantaneously. The charmed lemon, after 
completing its task returns to the sorcerer, 
wlio anxiously awaits its return, for it is be- 
lieved that if the lemon fails to return some 
calamity or misfortune is sure to occur to him. 
For this reason the beginner desiring to be 
initiated into the mystery of this black art has- 
to make the first trial of his inaiitrns on a 
tree or a fowl. 

Females are also initiated into the mys- 
teries of Jddu or black art. Such women are 
required to go to the burning ground at mid- 
night in a naked state, holding in their hands 
hearths containing burn ing coals. While on 
their way they untie their hair, and then 
begin the recital of their mantras. There 
they dig out the bones of buried corpses, bring 
them home, and preserve them for practis- 
ing black art. 

There is a sect of Hindus known as 
Shaktas who practise the black art. The 
Shaktas worship their goddess at night, make 
offerings of wine and flesh, and then feast 

> School Master, Khopoli, Kolaba. 
B School Master, Bassein, Thuna« 

- School Master, Poladpur. Kolaba. 
' School Master, Mitbav, Ratndgiri. 



ABIL : A kind of incense. 
ABIR: White scented powder. 
ADaCHH: Red cotton yarn. 
ADAD: Lentils. 

ADAGHO BADAGHO : A ceremony performed to drive away insects. 
ADHASUR : Name of a demon. 
ADHIKAMAS : Intercalary month. 
ADI-NARAYAN: A name of Vishnu. 
ADO: Useless. 

ADUXSA : Name of a medicinal plant. 
AGAR : Excreta. 

AGASTYA: Name of a sage ; name of a constellation. 
AGATHI : A tree, Sesbania Grandiiiora. 
AGATHIO: SeeAgathi. 
AGHADA : Name of a plant. 
AGHORI : A sect of Hindus. 
AGL4RI : Fire temple of the Pdrsis. 
AGNI : Fire ; the deity presiding over fire. 
AGNICHAR : An order of evil spirits living in fire. 

AGNIHOTRA : A perpetual sacred fire preserved in a hole in the ground for receiving and preser- 
ving consecrated fire. 
AGNIHOTRI : One who keeps an Agnihotra. 

AGNIKUNDA : A hole in the ground, or an enclosed space, on the surface, or a metal square- 
mouthed vessel, for receiving and preserving consecrated fire. 
AGNI-SANSKAR: The rite of setting fire to a corpse. 
AGRI : Name of a caste or sn individual of it. 
AHALYA: The wife of the sage Gautam. 

AHEVA N.A.VAMI: The ninth day of the dark half of Bhadrapad. 
AHI : Name of a demon. 
AHIR : A caste of shepherds. 
AHUTI: A handful of rice, ghi, sesamum, etc., cast into fire, water, upon the ground etc , as an 

offering to the deities. 
AIR.\VAT: Name of the elephant of Indra; the elephant presiding over the east. 
AJA: A goat. 

AJAMO: Lingusticum ajwaen. 
AKASH : The sky. 
AKASH-GANGA : The milky way. 
AKHAND SAUBHAGYA: Perpetual unwidowhood. 
AKIK : A kind of stone. 

AKHA TRIJ : The third day of the bright half of Vaishdkh. 
ALAWANA : A sort of shawl. 

ALWANT : A spirit of a woman dying in childbirth or during menses. 
ALU : An esculent vegetable. 
ALUNDA : Name of a vow. 

* The terms given below are as they are used by the common people in popular parlance in which 
form they are given in the text. They will therefore not be found to be grammatically correct in all 
cases Again, only such meanings of the terms are given as apply in the context. 


AMANI : A kind of tree. 

AMAR : Immortal. 

AMATHO : Useless. 

AMATHd M.vMO : An order of ghosts. 

AMAV.iSYA : The last day of a month. 

AJIBA : Name of a goddess. 

AMBIL ; Conjee. 

AMBO : Mango. 

AMN.iYESHWAR : A name of the god Mahadev. 

ANAGH : Name of a vow. 

ANAGODHA: .See Anagh. 

AN.\NT CHATURDASHI : The fourteenth day of the dark half of Bhwlrapad sacred to Vishnu. 

ANDH.iRIO : An order of ghosts. 

ANGIRAS : Name of a sage. 

ANJALI : Palmful. 

ANJAN : Soot used as collyrium. 

ANJANI : Mother of Maruti. 

ANJANI : A sore or mole on the eye-lid. 

ANKADA : Name of a poisonous plant. 

AXNADEVA : The god presiding over food. 

ANNAKUTA : The eighth or tenth day of the bright half of Ashvin or the second day of the bright 

half of Kdrtik when sweets are offered to gods. 
ANNAPURNA : The goddess presiding over food. 
ANT.-VRAL : Name of a deity. 
ANTAR.\PAT : The piece of cloth which is held between the bride and bridegroom at the time of 

a Hindu wedding. 
ANTYESHTI ; Funeral rites. 
ANUR.\DH.\ : Name of a constellation. 

ANUSHTHAN : Performance of certain ceremonies and works in propitiation of a god, 
APASMAR : Epilepsy. 
APSAR.'V : Certain female divinities who reside in the sky and are the wives of the Gandharvas. 

They are sometimes represented as the common women of the gods. 
APT.\ : Name of a tree. 
ARANI : Elaeodendren glaucura. 
ARATI : The ceremony of waving (around an idol, a, guru, etc.,) a platter containing a burning 

ARDHODAYA : Half-risen state of a heavenly body. 
ARDRA ; Name of a constellation. 
ARGHYA : A respectful offering to a god er a venerable person consisting of various ingredients 

or of water only. 
ARJU.'JA : The third of the five Pandava brothers. 
ARUNDHATI : Wife of Vasishtha ; name of a star. 
ASARA : A water nymph. 
AS A N : A prayer carpet. 
ASHADH : The fourth month of the Deccani Hindu and the ninth month of the Gujarat Hindu 

calendar year. 
ASHAPURI : Name of a goddess. 
ASHLESHA : Name of a constellation. 
ASHO : A corrupted form of Ashvin. 
.\SHAP.\TI : Name of a mythological king. 
ASHT.VI5HARO : An order of ghosts. 
ASHTADALA : Eight-cornered. 

ASHT.V-DIK-PALA : Protectors of the eight diiTerent directions. 
ASHT.'iKA : A hymn consisting of eight verses. 


ASHTAMAHADA.N : A gift co»3i9ling of eight kinds of articles. 

ASHTAVASU : A class of divine beings eight in number. 

ASHVIX : The seventli month of the Doccani Hindu and the twelfth month of the Gujaidt Hindu 
calendar year. 

ASHVIXI : Xame of a constellation. 

ASHVINI KUM.iR : The twin .sons of the sun by hia wife Sanjnya in the form of a mar--. They 
are famous «s heavenly physicians. 

ASHWAMEDHA : Horse amcrifice. 

ASHWATTH OIA : The only son of Drona, ihe military preceptor ol the ICauravis and Pandavas. 

ASM.VNI : An order of ghosts. 

ASO : A corrupted form of Ashvin. 

ASOP.\LAAA : Name of a tree. 

ASUR GATI : The path of the demons. 

ATIT : A class of religious beggars. 

ATL-\S : A kind of cloth. 

ATRI : Name of a sage. 

ATY.iPATYA : Name of an out-door game played in the Deccan. 

AVAD-MATA : Name of a goddess. 

AV'AGAT : An order of ghosts. 

AV'AGATI : Fallen condition. 

AVALIA : A Muhammadan saint. 

AVALA : Name of a tree. 

AVATAR : An incarnation of Vishnu. 

AVI : Aa order of ghosts. 

AVLI : Name of a tree. 

AWDUMBAR : A tree, Fioua glomerata. 

AWUT.\ : Wood bill. 

AY.\N : Name of a tree. 


BaB.\RO : An order of ghosts. 

BABHUL : .-Vcacia arabica. 

BABRIO : .See Babaro. 

BABRO : See Babaro. , 

BABRUV.4H.\N : Name of a demon ; a son of Arjuna. 

B.-iBlTL : Acacia arabica. 

BADHA : Impending evil. 

B vGHADA : Name of an evil spirit. 

BaGULBAWA : Name of a goblin. 

BAHIRI : Name of a goddess. 

BAHIRI-SOMJAI : Name of a goddess. 

BAHIROBA : Name of a minor deity. -.j 

BAHIROBACHE BHUT : An order of ghosts. 

BAJA: Dish. 

BAJALE : A wooden cot. 

BAJAT : A wooden stool. 

BAJANIA : A cast of tumblers or an individual of it. 

BAKA : Name of a demon; name of a sage. 

BAKLA : A small round flat cake of dry boiled bean; . 

BAKL.tN : See Bakla. 

BAKOR : Noise. 

B.iLA TERASH : Tlie 13th day of tl»o dark half of I'iddrapati. 

BALAD : An ox. 


BALADI : An order of ghosts. 

BALDEV : Name of the brother of Krishna, the eighth incarnation of Vislmu 

BALEV : The full moon day of Shrdvana. 

BALEVA : See Balev. 

B.VLEVIAX : A ki:id of worship. 

BALI: Name of a mighty demon, the lonl of the nether world or pdldl ; an oblation; a victim. 

offered to any deity ; name of a procession. 
BALIDAN : Offering of a victim. 
BALLA : An order of ghosts. 
BaXASUR : Name of a demon. 
B.\XDH.U-JAVAX : Name of a cattle disease. 
B.\NIA : A trader. 

B.iPA : Name of a guardian spirit of fields. 
B.vPDEV : See Bdpa. 

B.VRAXESHWAR .MAH.iDEV : A name of Mahadev. 
BaRAS : The twelfth day of the bright or (lark half of a month. 
BaRVATIA: An outlaw. 
BATaSA: a kind of sweetmeat. 

BATRIS.V : A man possessed of thirty. tw(. accomplishments. 
BATUK : Name of a minor deity. 
BaU : A word used to frighten children ; a gubUn. 

g^y^ . ^ term of respectful compellation or mention for an ascetic or religious teacher. 
BaVAL : See Babul. 
B.\VO : *'ee Bava. 

BAYA : Name of a deity presiding over small-pox. 
BaWAN VIR : Name of a minor deity. 
BECHRA MATA: Name of a goddess. 
BEDA : Name of a tree. 
BEL : Aegle Marmelos. 
BEL-BHAND.'VR : Leaves of tlie Aegle Marmelos and the turmeric powder that are kept on an 

BEK : Jujube tree. 
BERO : Deaf. 

BETHI : An order of ghosts. 
BHaBHO': Worthless. 
BH.vDARWA : See Bhadrapad. 
BHADRAPAD : The sixth month of the Deccani Hindu and the ele%-enth month of the Gujarat 

Hindu calendar year. 
BHAGAT : An exorcist. 
BH\G1RATH : Name of an ancient king of the solar dj-nasty who is said tu have brought down 

the Ganges from heaven to the earth. 
BHaGVAT : Name of one of the eighteen purdnaa. 
BHAGVATI : Name of a goddess. 
BHAGWAN : An epithet of Vishnu ; of Shiva. 
BHAGWATI : See Bhagvati. 

BHAIRAV : A name of an inferior manifestation of Shiva, 
BHAJAN : Repeating the name of a god as an act of worship ; hjTnns or pieces or verses sung to ■ 

a god. 
BHAKTIMARGA : Path of devotion. 
BHALU : An old female jackal. 
BHAXDARI : A caste of Hindus. 
BHAXG : Hemp water. 
BHANGI : A scavenger ; name of the caste of scavengers. 


BHAXGRA : A kind of tree. 

BHARANAI : Name of a goddess. 

BHARANI : Name of a constellation. 

BHaRAXI : The process of charming. 

BHARATA- Name of a brother of RCraa tlie seventh incarnation of Vishnu. 

BHARV.vD : A caste of shepherds. 

BHASIKA : An order of ghosts. 

BHASMA : Holy ashes. 

BHASMaSTO : Name of a demon. 

BHaUBIJ : The second day of the bright half of Kdrtik. 

BHAVaI : Name of a stone deity. 

BHaVAKAI : Name of a goddess. 

BHAVaNI : A n<.me of the goddess Parvati, 

BHaVIX : A caste of female temple servants Wao are prostitutes by profession. 

BHAWaXI : See Bhavani. 

BHEXSA : A she-bu£Ealo. 

BHEXSaSUR : A demon in the form of a he-bufialo. 

BHIKHaRI : A beggar. 

BHIKHO : A beggar. 

BHIL : A partly Hindu, partly animistic tribej 

BHI>LA : The second of the five Paadava brothers^ 

BHIMA-AGIARAS : The eleventh day of the bright half of Jyeshtha. 

BHIMASEXA : See Bhima. 

BHIMXATH M.AHADEV : A name of Shiva. 

BHIMXaTH SHANKAR : A name of Shiva. 

BHISHIIA : Son of Shantanu and the river Ganges and grand-uncle of the Paadavasani Kairavas.^ 

BHOGAVA : Village bomidary. 

BHOI : A caste of fishermen and palanquin-bearers, 

BHOJAPATRA : A palm-leaf. 

BHOLAXaTH : A name of Shiva. 

BHOXG RIXGDI : Name of a poisonous plant. 

BHOPALA: Gourd. 

BHOPI: The person that officiates in the terapl?^ of village deities. 

BHUCHAR ; An order of ghosts hovering over the earth; 

BHUXGA : A black bee. 

BHUSHUXDAKaK : Name of a sage. 

BHUT : An evil spirit. 

BHUTA : See Bhut. 

BHUTA-DEVATA : A ghostly godling. 

BHXJTALI : A woman who can influence evil spirits to do harm to otlier-;. 

BHUTE : Plural of Bhutya : See Bhutya. 

BHUTIX : A female member of an order of devotees of the goddess Bhavani. 

BHUTNATH : Name of an evil spirit. 

BHUTYA : A male member of an order of devotees of the goddess Bhavani. 

BHUA^A : A male exorcist. 

BHTT\'I : A female exorcist. 

BIBHISHANA : Brother of Ravana, the demon king of Lanka or Ceyloa. 

BIJ : The second day of the bright or dark half of a month. 

BIJAVRIKSHANYaYA : The maxim of seed and shoot. The maxim takes its origin from thj 

mutual relation of causation that exists between seed and shoot, and ia 
applied to cases in which two objects stand to each other in the relation 
of both cause and effect. 

BILADO : A cat. 


HI LI : See Brl. 
BINDU : A drop. 
BOCHO : A coward. 

BODAN : A ceremony in wliich curds, milk, boiled rico, fried cakes, etc., are mixed up together and 
presented in oblation to the goddess Mah^lakshmi by a company of at least five 
married women and one virgin. 
BODO : Bald-headed. 

BOL CHOTH : The fourth day of the dark half of Shrdvan. 
BORADl : The Jujube tree. 

BOTERUN : .\ complete cessation of rain for seventy-two days. 
BOW.UI : See Biiva. 
BOW : See Biiu. 

BRAHMA GRAHA : Ghost of a Brahman, 
BRAHMA : Tlie first god of the Hindu Trinity, 
BRAHMABHOJ : A feast to Brahmans. 

BRAHM.\OH.iRI : One who has taken a vow to lead a celibate life. 

BRAHMAH.\TYA : The murder of a Brahman. 

BRAHMAN : The sacerdotal caste of Hindus or an individual of it. 

BRAHM.\N.\V.^BUN.\ : The appointment of duly authorised Brahmans to perform religious 


BRAHMARANDHRA : The aperture supposed to be at the crown of the head, through which the 
soul takes its flight on death. 

BRAHMA RaKSHASA : .S'ee Brahma Sambandh. 

BRAHMA SAMBANDH : The ghost of a Brahman that in his life time possessed high attainments, 

and a liaughty spirit. 

BRIHA.SP.A.TI : Name of the preceptor of the gods. 

BRUHANNADA : The name assumed by Arjuna when residing at the palace of Virata. 

BUDHA : Mercury. 

BUDDHI : Name of a wife of Ganpati. 

■CENDUR : Red lead. 
CHADA : Rent. 

■CHAITANNADYA : An order of ghosts. 
CHAITR.A : The first month of the Deccani Hindu and the sixth montli of the Gujarat Hindu 

calendar year. 
•CHAKLI : A sparrow. 
CHAK PADANE : Appearance of red pustules on tlie face supposed to be caused hy tlie influence 

of an evil eye. 
CHAKORA : A bird, Bartavelle Partridge. 
■CHALA : Name of a deity. 
CH.4LEGH.\T : An order of ghosts. 
CHAM.4R : A caste of tanners. 
CHAMPA : Michelia charapaca. 

■CHAMPA-SH.\SHTI : The sixth day of the briglit half of M,irr)nahirsha. 
CHAMPAVATI : Name of a goddess. 
GHANA: Gram. 

CHANDA : Name of a kind of wind. 
■CHAND CHANl : An order of ghosts. 
CHANDAN : Sandal wood. 
CHANDIKA : Name of a goddess. 

CHANDI K.W.-VCH : .\ hymn in lionour of the goddess Chandi or Durga, ] 

<;H.\NDIP.\TH : Recitation of a hymn in lionour of the goddess Chandi or Durga. 
• : Nimie of a goddess. 


CHANDRA: The moon. 

CHANDRAMANDAL : The disk of .the moon ; the lunar sphere. 

CHANDRAYAN VR.\T : Name of a vow. 

CHARAK: Excreta. 

CH.4RAN : A caste of genealogists and bards. 

CH.\R.AN.iMRIT : Water in which the feet of a spiritual guide liave been washe I. 

CH.ARM.ARl.A. : Name of a snake deity. 

CHARONTHI : A kind of flour. 

CHASHA : The Blue jay. 

CHAT : An image of darbha grass at Shrdddha when the required Brdliman is not present 

CH.\T.\ SHRaDDHA: .\ shrdddha in which a chat represents a Braliman. 

CH.iTURMA8 : The period of four months commencing from the tenth day ot the bright -lalf 
Ashddh and ending with the tenth day of the bright half of Kdrtik. 

CHATURTHI : The fourth day of the bright or dark half of a month. 

CHAURAR : An order ot ghosts. 

CHEDA : Ghost of a person of the Kunbi or Shudra caste or an unmarried Mahtir. 

CHEDOBA : Name of a spirit deity. 

CHELA : A disciple. 

CHELAN : An oblation to a Mata or goddess. 

CHETAK : A kind of black art. 

CHETAKIN : A witch. 

CHETUK : A spirit servant. 

CHHAM.\CHH.\RI : Death anniversary. 

CHHLPA : A caste of calico-printers. 

CHHOGALA : Celebrated. Great. 

CHHOGALO : With a tail.- 

CHILBIL : Notes of the Pingala bird. 
€HILUM : A clay pipe. 
CHINDH.\RO: Ragged. 

CHIRANJIVA : Immortal. 

C'HITHI ; -\ piece of paper on waich mystic signs are drawn ; an amulet. 

CHITH.ARIA: Ragged. 

CHIT! : See Chithi. 

CHITPaV'AN : A caste of Bralmians also known as Konkanasth. 

CHITRA : Name of a constellation. 

CHOK : A square. 

CHOLA : Dolichos Sinensio. 

CHOLI : A bodice. 

CHONGE : A kind of sweet. 

€HOR.\SI KANTINI ■: An order of ghosts. 

CHORaSI VIRU : An order of ghosts. 

CHORAWA : A ceremony performed at the time of reaping. 

CHOTH : The fourth day of the bright or dark half of a moath. 

CHUDBUDE JOSHI : A caste of fortune-tellers. 

CHUDEL : An order of female ghosts. 

CHUDELA : ^ee Chudel. 

CHUDI : A torch. 

CHUDI PAURNIMA : The full-moon day of tlie month of Mdgh. 

CHUNADI : A kind of cloth worn by females. 

CHUNTHO: Ragged. 

CHUNVaLIA KOLI : A tribe of KoUs. 

CHURAMA : Sweet balls of wheat flour fried and soaked in ghi. 

CHUTAKI : Snapping the thumb and finger. 

€0HAMPAL0 : Meddlesome. 


DADAMO : An order of ghosts. 
DADAMOKHODI.vR : Nome of a field deity, 
DAUH : A molar tooth. 

DADH BANDHAVI : To deprive of the power of eating by a charm or spell. 
DADO : An order of gho.sts. 
DAKAN : A witch ; an order of ghosts. 
DAKINI : .See D;ikan. 

DAKLA : A spirit instrument in the form of a small kettle-drum. 
DAKSHA : A celebrated Prajdpati bom from the thtimb of Brahma. 
DAKSHANA : A gift of money made to Bralimans. 
DAL : Name of a sect of Hindus. 

DALAP : A ceremony performed for the propitiation of the minor deities of the fields. 
DALIA : Baked split gram, 

DAM.ANA : Aii amulet tied to the horns of a pet animal. 
DAMPATYA : A married pair. 
DANA : Com seed. 

DANDA : The bat at the game of trap-stick. 
DANKLA : .See Diikla. 

DANKLA BESWAN : The installation of a ddnkla. 
DANKLAN : See Dakla. 

DARBHA : A sacred grass ; Cynodon Dactylon, 
DARDURI : Name of a water njTnph. 
DARGA : A Muhammadan place of worship. 
DAEJI : A caste of tailors. 
DASHA : Influence. 

DARSHA SHRADDHA : A shrdddha to the manes on every new moon day. 
DASARA : The tenth day of the bright half of Kdrtik. 
DASHARATHA : Son of Aja and father of Rama. 

DAS PINDA : The oblations collectively to the manes of a deceased ancestor which are offere 1 
daily from the first day of his decease until the tenth, or which are offered together 
on the tenth : also the rite. 
DATAN : Wooden sticks for brushing the teeth. 
DATTA : Name of a god. 
DATTATRAYA : See Datta. 
DAV : An order of ghosts. 
DEDAKO: A frog. 
DEHARI MATA : Name of a goddess. 
DELAY ADI DEVI : Name of a goddess. 
DENDO : The croaking of a frog. 

DEOPAN : Ceremonies and observances in propitiation of a god. 
DESH.^STHA : A caste of Bralimans found in the Deccan. 
DEVA : A god. 

DEVACHiiR : Spirit of a Shudra who dies after his marriage. 
DEVAHUTI : Name of the mother of the sage Kapil. 
DEVAK : A term for the deity or deities worshipped at marriages, thread investitures etc. ; a 

DEVAKI : Mother of Krishna. 
DEVAL : A temple. 

DEVAL RIGHANE : Entering into the service of the temple. 
DEVALI : The male offspring of a Bhavin. 
DEVALO : Not loved. 


i)EVARSHI : A dealer with gods and devils : one that summons, exorcises them, etc. 

DEVA SARPA : A snake belonging to a deity. 

DEVASKI : The annual ceremonies in honour of the tutelar divinity of a village. 

DEVA YOSHITA : A woman ofiered to a god. 

DEV DIVA LI : Tlie eleventh day of the bright half of Kdrtik. 

DEVI : A goddess. 

DEVIPANTH : A sect of the worshippers of the goddess Durga. 

DH.4G.-V : .An amulet made of a piece of cloth. 

DHAL-JATRA : A ceremony performed at the time of harvest. 

DHA>I.\ : A name of Hanumdn. 

DH.AN.A: Coriander. 

DH.\N.ANJAYA : Name of a snake. 

DH.\NA-TRAYOD.\SHI : The thirteenth day of the dark half ot Ashmn. 

DH.ANrC4AR : A caste of shepherds. 

DH.A.NISHTHA : Name of a constellation. 

DHANU : Sagittarius. 

DH.\NURM.iS : The period during which the sun is in Sagittarius. 

DH.ANU-S.\NKRaNT : Transit or passage of the sun through Sagittarius. 

DHARaVaDI : A stream of milk. 

DH.\RMAH.\J.\ : The god of deatli. 

DH.ARM.\SHALA : .\ rest house. 

DH.A.RMASHASTRA : The code of body of Hindu law. 

DHARM.\SINDHU : Name of a work treating of Hindu law. 

DHED : .A.n impure caste of Hindus. 

DHEDV.vDA: The ward or place occupied by the Dhed caste. 

DHINGO : Fat. 

DHOBI : .\ caste of washermen. 

DHOL : A drum. 

DHOLIO : .An order of ghosts. 

DHONDILG.AJY.i : Name of a rite performed for securing rainfall. 

DHORI: White. 

DHOTAR : Waist cloth. 

DHUL PaDAVO : The first day of the dark half of Fdlgun. 

DHRUVA : The son of Uttanapada. He was a great devotee of the god Vishnu. The solar star. 

DHULETI : .See Dhul Padavo. 

DHULW.AD : See Dhul Padavo. The day of thr.iwirig dust after the burning of the HoU. 

DHUND.\ : Name of a demon goddess. 


DHUNDHU.\I.\RI : Name of a mythological personage. 

DHUNI : The smoke-fire of an ascetic over which he sits inhaling the smoke. 

DHUPA : Frankincense. 

DIGAMBARA : Name of a goddess. 

DIPO: Panther. 

DISHA-SHUL : Pain caused by directions. 

DIVaLI: a festival with nocturnal illuminations, feastings, gambling, etc. held durin.' the con- 

eluding day of Aahuin and the first and second day of Kcirlik. 
DIVaSA : The fifteenth day of the dark half of AshMh. 
DIW.AD : A serpent of a large but harmless species. 
DODK.\ : One hundredth part of a rupee. 

DOK.\DO : A ball of molasses and sesamum seed cooked together. 
DOR-i : Piece of a string ; a magic thread. 
DORLI : Solanum indicum. 
DOSO: Old. 


DRO : A kind of sacred grass. 

DRONA : Son of Bharadv^ja, by birth a BnUiman but acquainted with military science which he 

received as a gift from Parashuriim. He instructed the Kauravas and Patidavas in the 

use of arms. 
DRUSTAMANI : A kind of black beads. 
DUDHA: Milk. 

DUDHP.VK : Rice cooked in milk and sweetened with sugar. 
DUG-DUDIOON : .Se« Dakla. 

DUHITRA : Shrdddha performed by a grandson to. propitiate his maternal grandfather. 
DUKAL : Famine. 
DUNDUBHI : A kettle-drum. 
DUNGAR : A hill. 

DURBAR : The court of an Indian Chief. 
DURGA : Name of a goddess. 
DURGATI : Fallen condition. 
DURVA : A kind of sacred grass. 

DURYODHANA : The eldest of the Kaurava brothers. 
DWIJA : A twice-boni. A Brahman, a Kshatriya or a V'aishya, whose investiture with the saorad 

thread constitutes, rehgiouslj" and metaphorically a second birth. 
DWITIYA : The second day of the bright or dark half of a month. 


EKADASHI : The eleventh day of the bright and dark halves of a month. 

EKAL PER : Zizyphus jujuba. 

EKANTARtO : Intermittant fever. 

EKOTISHTA : The rites performed on the eleventh day after death. 

ETALAI : Name of a goddess. 

FAG : A vulgar song. 

FAGAN : A corrupted form of Falgun. ^'ee Falgun. 

FAKIR : A Muhammadan mendicant. 

FAKIRI : Alms given to Fakirs in the Muharram. 

FAKIRO : A beggar. 

FALGUN : The twelfth month of the Deiccani Hindu and the fifth month of the Gujarit Hindu 

calendar year. 
FAVADI : Name of a bird. 
FIRANGaI : Name of a goddess. 
FUL : A flower. 
FUL DOL : A festival in which coloured water is thrown. 

GADHEDA: .\ donkey. 

GADHEDO : See Gadheda. 

GADHERIMaTA : Name of a goddess installed to protect a fortress or a street. 

GAFAL: Stupid. 

GAGANACHAR : An order of ghosts moving in the etherial regions. 

GAGARBEDIUN : A piece of leather thong or a piece of black wood on which mysticspells have 

been cast. 
GAJABAI : Name of a goddess. 
GAJACHHAYA : A festival — the day of the new moon of Bhddrapad the moon being in the 

Hasta constellation. 
GALAL : Red powder. 


GANA : A troop of demigods considered as Shiva's attendants. 

GANAGOR : Name of a vow. 

GANDHARVA : A celestial musician ; a class of demigods who are considered to be tlie singers of 

GANDIV'A : Name of the bow of Arjuna. 
GANDU : Name of a tree. 
GANDH : Sandal paste. 

GANESH CHATURTHI ; The fourth day of the bright half of Bhddrapad celebrated as the birth- 
day, of Ganesh. 
GANESHIO : A hook-shaped instrument used by thieves in boring holes through walls. 
GANGA : The river Gangw. 
GANGAJAL : Water of the Ganges. 
GANGIGOR : Name pf a vow. 
G.VNGLO: Stony. 
G.iNGUD : An order of ghosts. 
GaNJA : Hemp flower. 

GANPATI : Tlie son of Shiva and Piirvati. He is the deity of wisdom and the remover of diffi- 
culties and obstacles. 
GANPATIPUJAN : The worship of Ganpati. 
GaNTHIA : A preparation of gram flour. 
GAON-DEVl : \illage goddess. 
GARABI : A soug in propitiation of a goddess. 
GARBHaDaN : The marriage consummation ceremony. 
GaRHANE : Supplication to an idol. 
GARUD : The eagle. 
GARUD PUR AN : Name of a purdn. 
GaTRaD : Name of a goddess. 
GAU : A measure of distance equal to 1 J miles. 
GAUTAJl : Name of a sage. 
GAVA : A wild ox. 
GAV'ALI : A caste or herdsmen. 
GAVATDEV : Name of a godling. 
GAVATI : An order of ghosts. 
GAYaSUR : Name of a demon. 
GaYATRI : Name of a daughter of Braluua. 

GAYATRI MANTRA : A sacred verse from the Vedas held specially sacred and repeated by every 
Brahman at his morning and evening devotion. The verse ia in honour 
of the sun. 
GAYATRI PURASCHARAN : A form of devotion requiring tlie recitation of the Gdyatri tnatUra a 

hmidred thousand times with certain symbolic ceremonies. 
GaYATRIPURASCHAVACH.AN See Gayatripurasoharan. 
GEDI : A bat. 

GEDI-DaNDA : An outdoor game played by boys. 
GERIA: A boj' who takes an active part in the Holi festival. 
GH.4DI : An exorcist. A caste of temple ministrants or an individual of it. 
OHADI ! A measure of time equal to twenty-four minutes. 
GHADULO : A process for removing the effects of the evil eye. 
GHaNCHIXI : An order of ghosts. 
GHaNDHARAVI : An order of ghosts. 

GH.\NI : That quantity of oil seeds which is put in at one time to be crushed in an oil mill; 
GHAT : Steps on the side of a river or tank leading to the water. 
GHATOTKACHA : Name of a demon. 
GHELI: Mad. 


GHELO: iMad. 


GHERaYALA: Eclipsed. 

GHETA : A sliocp. 

GHOUO : A Imrse. 

GHUGAlil : Grain boiled wliolf, i.e. unsplit and uiihusked. 

GHUMAT ; A sort of musical instrument— an earthen vessel, pitcher-form, covered over at the 

larger mouth with leather. 
GHUX.\ : A mysterious watery pit. 
GIDOT.iX ; Xame of a creeper. 
GILLI-DAXD.\ : A play amongst boys, trapstick. 
GIRASIA : A Rajput landholder. 

GIRHA : A water demon. Applied to Riiliu or to an eclipse in geueral, solar or lunar. 
GIRI : An order or individual of it among Gosdvis. 
GOCHADl : Cattle or dop louse. 
GODHO : A bull. 

GOKARX : Xame of a mythological king. 
GOKHALO : A niche in the wall. 

GOKUL : The name of the village at which Krishna was brought up. 
GOKHARU : A species of thorns. 
GOKUL-ASHTAMI : The eighth day of the dark half of Bhddrajxid celebrated as the birthday of 

GOL : Molasses. 
GOLABA : Xame of a goddess. 
GOLAMBADEVI : Xame of a goddess. 
GOMUKH : Mouth of a cow. 

GOXDARO : Place where the village cattle rest. 
GOXDHAL : A kind of rehgious dance. 
GOOLVEL : A kind of creeper. 
GOPALSAXTAX : Xame of an incantation. 
GOPRADAX : Gift of a cow with its calf to a Brahman. 
GOR : A priest. 

GORA : A black earthen vessel filled with curds. 
GORADIA : A name of Hanuman. 
GOR AIX : A married unwidowed woman. 
GORAKHA : Xame of a saint. 
GORAKH CHIXCH : A kind of tree. 
GORJI : A preceptor. 
GORAKHRAJ : Xame of a saint. 
GOSAVI : An ascetic. 

GOTRA: A section of a caste having a common ancestor. 

GGURI-PUJAX : The worship of the goddess Gouri, a festival observed only by women. 
GOUTRAD : A vow in honour of the cow lasting from tlie eleventh day to the fifteenth da\- of the 

briglit half of Bhddrapad. 
GOUTRAL : Xame of a vow. 

GOVARDH.\N: A celei)rated hill near Mathura. A large heap of cow dung or of rice, vegetables, 
etc. made on the first day of the bright halt of Kdrtik in imitation of the 
GOWAL A-l)10\'.\ : Name of a deity connected with rain-fall. 
GRAHA : .\ planet. 
GRAHAXA : An eclipse. 

GRAHAN-PUJ.VX : The worship of the plough on the fuU-moou day of Shrdvan. 
GRAH.\-SH.IXTI : A ceremony in propitiation of the plauets. 
GRAMADE\'ATA : A village goddess. 
GRAMA-DEVt: A village goddess. 


GRIHADEVATA : The diety which presides over the house. 

GRISHMA-RITU : The summer. 

GRIVA : Name of a deiti-. 

GUDHI : A pole, wrapped arouud witli a clutli, a raaugu sprig, etc., erected on tlie first dav o£ 

the year before the liouse-door. 
GUDHI-PADVA : The first day of the bright half of Cliaitra, the new year's day of the Ui ccani 

GUHYAK : An order of semi-divine beings. 
GUL.\B: Arose. 
GUGAL : Balsamodendron. 

GUJAKALPA : Name of a medieuial preparation. 
■ GULAL : Red powder. 
GUMPHA : A cave. 
GUNDAR : Gimi arabie. 

GUR AV : A caste of temple niinistrants or an individual uf it, 
GURU: A religious preceptor; Jupiter. 
GURU CHARITRA : Name of a sacred book. 


HADAL : Ghost of a woman who dies witliin ten days of ohildbii-tli or durinc; menses. 

HADALI : See Hadal. 

H.\J : A pilgrim. 

HA JAM : A caste of barbers or an individual of it. 

HAL.iHAL : A sort of deadly poison produced at tlie churning of the ocean. 

H.\NSA : A goose. 

HANUM.AN : Name of a deity in the form of a monkey. He was a great devutee of Rama. 

H.AN'UM-VN-JAyANTI : Tlie fuU-moou-day of chailra celebrated as tlie birthday of Hanuman 

HAR : .A name of Shiva. 

HARDA : A garland of balls made of sugar. 

HARDAS : One who performs Kathds that is relates stories of Hindu deities to the accompanimeut 

of music. 
HARDE : Myrobalan. 
HARI : A name of Vishnu. 

HARISCHANDRA : Name of a mythological king. 
HARIT.ALIKA : The third day of the bright half of Bhddmpad on which images of Parvati made 

of earth are worshipped by women. 
HARIVANSHA : Name of a purdn. 
HAST.A : Name of a constellation. 
HATHADI : An order of ghosts. 
H.ATHI : An elephant. 
H.AVAN : A sacrificial offering. 
HEDAMATIO : A name of Haniunan. 
HEDAMB.A : Name of a giantess. 
HEDLI : An order of ghosts. 
HIDIMBA : Name of a giantess. 
HIJADA : A eunuch. 
HINGLAJ : Name of a goddess. 
HIRANYAK.A.SHIPU : Name of a demon. 
HIRANYAKASHYAPU : Name of a demon. 
HIR ANY.vKSHA : Name of a demon. 
HIRWA : An order of ghosts. 
HOL ; Name of a goddess. 

HOLI : A festival held at the approach of the vernal equinoj;. The pile arranged to be kindled at 
the festival. 


HOLIA : A boy who takes an active part in the HoU celebrations. 

HOLIKA ; Name of a goddess. 

HOLO : A species of birds. 

HOMA : A sacrifice. 

HOMAHAVAN : A formation expressing compreliensively or collectively, the several acts and 

points appertaining to oblation by fire : also any one indefinely of these acts 

and points. 
HOW : Name of a demon. 

HUMBAD : A casle of Vanias or an individual of it. 
HL"T\SHAN'l : The pile arranged to be kindled at the festival of Holi. 


INA : An egg. 

INaM : A gift. 

IND.A : An egg-shaped vessel. 

IXDRA-DHANUSHY.\: A rain-bow. 

IXDRAJIT : Name of a demon. 

lNDRAM.AHOT.S.\\^4 : A festival celebrated in lionour of the god Indra. 

IRALE : A protection against rain made of the leaves of trees, 

ISHTADEVATA : A chosen deity. 

ITIDIO : A species of insects. 


JaDI : Fat. 

JADO : Fastened. 

JaDU : The black art. 

.J.\GR.-\N : Tlie fifteentli day of the l)right half of Aahddh. 

.TaGRITI : Wakefulness. 

.J.AIKH.\ : .\n order of ghosts. 

JaKH.aI : Name of a minor goddess. 

.J.AKH.\NI : An order of semi-tlivine beings. 

.JAKH.\I-DEVI : Name of a minor goddess. 

J.\KH.-VRA : Name of a minor goddess. 

.J.\KHARO : An order of gliosts. 

.JAKHIN : Spirit of a woman whose husband is alive. 

.JAKHMAT.\ : Name of a minor goddess. 

J.\KRIN : Name of a deity residing in water. 

J.\L : An order of ghosts ; name of a tree, 

JAL.\CH.-\R : .\n order of evil spirits living in water. 

.JAL.\DEVI : Water-goddess. 

J.\LAJ : An order of ghosts. 

J.ALA-JATRA : The ceremonj' of submerging the image of .Shiva. 

J.\LANDH.\R : Name of a demon. 

J.AL.AP : A dream caused by cold. 

JALDEVKI : Water-goddess. 

JALOTS.W.A : A water festival. 

JAMBUV.\NT: One of the generals of Rama's army at the siege of Lanka or Ceylon. 

.JAMBUV.\NTI: The daughter of Jambuvant. 

J.\MI : An order of ghosts. 

JAN : An order of ghosts. 

J.\NAK : A king of Mahila, the foster-father of Sita. 

JAN.A.WE : .4 sacred thread. 

J.ANGAJtl: j\ Lingdyat priest. 

.1AXHU : Name of a mythological king. 

OANJIRO : A black cotton thread with seven knots. 


JANMASHTAMI: The eighth day of the dark half of Shrdvan celebrated as the birth-day of 

JANMA-SUVV4SINI : A woman who is perpetually uawidowed. 
JANNI : Name of a minor goddess. 
JANTRA : A mystical arrangement of words. 
JAP : Repeating prayers in a muttering manner. 
JAP-M.tL : A rosarx-. 
JARAN : A kind of black art. 
JAR.4SANDH: Name of a demon. 
JAR I : Name of a goddess. 

JARI-MARI : A goddess presiding over an epidemic or pestilential disease. 
JATA : Matted hair. 
JATRA: A fair. 
JATUPI : Name of a sage. 
JAVA: Barley. 

JAVaLA : Tender wheat plants. 

JETHA : The eighth moiitli of the Gujardt Hindu calendar year. 
JHAPAT : A sudden encounter. 
JHOLaI : Name of a goddess. 
JIMP : An order of ghosts. 
JINNI : An order of ghosts. 
JINO: Small. 
JINTHRO: Rugged. 
JIREN: Cimiin-seed. 
JIVADHANI : Name of a goddess. 
JIVI: Live. 
JIVO: Live. 

JOGAI : Name of a goddess. 
JOGANI : A female harpie. 

JOGATA : A male child oSered to the goddess Yallamma. 
JOG-ATIN ^ A female child offered to the goddess Yallamma; 
JOGAVA : Begging in the name of the goddess Amba. 
JOGI : A male child ofiered to the goddess Mayaka. 
JOGIN : A female child oSered to the goddess Mdyaka. 
JUARI : A kind of corn. 
JULEBI : \ kind of sweet. 
JUTHI : False. 
JUVARI : A kind of corn. 
JYESHTHA : The third month of the Deccani Hindu and the eighth month of the Gujarat Hindu 

calendar year. Name of a constellation. 
JYOTISH-SHASTRA : The science of astronomy. 


KABAR : A tomb raised over the grave of a Muhammadan saint. 

KABIR : Name of a celebrated saint. 

KACHA : The son of Brihaspati, the preceptor of gods. 

KACHAKADA : A kind of bead. 

KACHARO : Refuse. 

KACHBI : Rainbow. 

KACHHIA : A caste of vegetable sellers. 

KAD.ADAN : Legumes. 

KADALIPUJAN : Plantain tree worship. 

KADAMB : Authocephalus cadumba. 


KADVl : Bitter. 

KAUAVO: Bitter. 

KADULIMB : Melia Azadirachta. 

KAFRl : An order of ghosts. 

KAGDO : A crow. 

K.\(iR.4SHlA : An expounder of the utterances of crows. 

KAUVA : Cooketl food offered to the manes. 

KAITABHA : Name of a demon. 

KAJAL : Collyrium. 

K.4JK.A : A kind of tree. 

K.AK.\DI : A cucumber. 

KAKBHUSHUNDl : Name of a sage.. 

K.\LASH: A jar. 

K.\L.\SHI ; A weight of corn. 

KaL.AXEMI : Name of a demon. 

KAL.A.SIO : A bowl. 

KALI : Name of a goddess. 

KALIKA : Name of a goddess. 

KALKAICHE BHUT : An order of ghosts. 

KALI CHAUDAS : The fourteenth day of the dark half of Ashvin. 

KALINGI : Daughter of the king of the Kalingas. 

KALI PAR.AJ : A name applied collectively to the aboriginal tribes of Gu,iarat. 

KALIYA NAG : Name of a mythological snake. 

KALI YUGA : The fourth age of the world according to the Hindu scriptures 

KALO : Black. 

KALO VA : Name of a cattle disease. 

KALPAVRIKSHA : A fabulous tree granting all desires. 

KAL BHAIRAV : A name of Mahadev. 

KAL PURUSHA : The god of death. 

KALUBAI : Name of a minor goddess. 

KALYAN: Welfare. 

KAMA DHENXJ : A heavenly cow granting all desires. 

KAJ1.\LA HOLI : The fourteenth day of the bright half of Fdlgun. 

KAMAN : A kind of black art of bewitching a person. 

KAMANDALU : A gourd. 

KAMDEV MAHADEV : A name of Mahddev. 

KAMOD : A kind of rice. • 

KANAKNATH : A name of Mahadev. 

KANKOTRI : Red powder. 

K.vNOB.A : Name of a minor deity. 

KANSA : King of Mathura, maternal uncle of Krishna. 

KANSAR : Coarse wheat flour cooked in water or ghi and sweetened with molasses or sugar. 

K.ANYA : A girl ; Virgo. 

KAPHAN : The cloth in which a corpse is wrapped. 

KAPIL : Name of a sage, 

KAl'ILASHASTHI : .\ day on which synchronize six pau-ticulars — the day, Tuesday ; the month, 
Bhddrapad ; the date, the sixth of the dark fortnight; the Nakshatra , 
Rohini; the Yog, Vyatipat; the JV/a/id/ui/:«/tafra, Uasti« 

KAPILASHETE : ,b'e€ Kapihishasthi. 

KAR.4N : A kind of tree. 

KARHAD.A : A caste of Brtihraans found in the Deccan. 

KAHKA : Cancer. 


KARKATA : Name of a water nj-mph. 

KARKATI : See Karkata, 

KARKOTAK : Name of a snake. 

KARMAMaRGA : The path of action. 

KaRTIK : The eightli month of the Deocani Hindu and the Brst month of the Gujarat Hindu 

calendar year. 
KARTIKEY : Son of Shiva, the commander of the army of tlie gods, 
KASADA : A kind of sacred grass. 
KASaI : A butcher. 
KASATIA : Name of a god. 

KASATIA-GaNTH : Tying the knot of Kasatia, a vow observed in the name of the god Kasatia, 
K.\SHI : Benares. 
KaTHAWATI : Name of a tribe. 

K.ATHEKARI : A narrator of the legends of the gods. 
KATHI : Name of a tribe. 
K.\TK.\RI-: Name of a tribe. 
KaTLaN : A kind of medicinal preparation. 
KATYaR : A dagger. 

KAUL : The rice, betelnuts, etc., stuck upon an itiol when it is consulted. 
KAUL GHALNE : To consult a deity by haul. 
K.AUR.W.\ : The patronymic of the descendants of Kuru. but usually applied to the sons of 

K.\USTUBH.\ : Name of a celebrated jem obtained at the churning of the ocean and worn by 

KAXANESHWAR : A name of Mahadev. 
KAY A: Body. 
KEDaR : Name of a deity, 
KERADO : A kind of tree. 
KESHAR : Saffron. 
KESHAVA : A name of Krishna. 

KETU : In astronomy, the ninth of the planets ; in mythology, a demon, 
KH.\BITH : An order of ghosts. 
KH.AD-KHADYA-BESADVI : A ceremony performed by exorcists to propitiate their fa\-ourite 

• goddesses. 

KHADI : Red or green earth; 

KHAGACHAR : An order of gliosts roaming in tlie sky. 
KHAIR : Acacia catechu. 
KHAIS : A species of water spirits. 
KHAJaDA PANTH : A sect of Hindus. 
KHAKH ARA : A kind of tree. 
KHaKHI : A sect of Hindus. 

KHAL : The passage in the Shimlinga (phallus of Shiva). 
KHANA : A bodice cloth. 
KHANDE PUJ.YN : Worship of anus. 
KHANDERaI : A name of the deity Khandoba, 
KHANDOBA : Name of a deit.y. 
KHANJIR : A dagger; 
KHAPARI : A kind of cattle disease. 
KHaPRYA : An order of ghosts. 

KHAR AVA : A disease of cattle in which the hoofs are affected. 
KHAR V A : A caste of fishermen and sailors or an individual of it. 
KHARVI : See Kharva. 
KHATALE : A cot. 


KHATRI : A caste of weavers. 

KHAVAS: A costo of Hindus. 

KH.WIS : An order of ghosts. 

KHRT.VLO : Name of a snake deity. 

KHETRVA : A field. 

KHEM : .\n order of ghosts. 

KHICH.\DI : .\ preparation of rice and pulse cooked together. 

KHI.J.^DIO : Tlio Shami tree, Prosopis spicigera 

KHI.JADO: .SeeKhijadio. 

KHI.J.\DO MaMO : An order of ghosts. 

KHILI : A peg. 

KHIR : Rice cooked in milk and sweetened with sugar. 

KHIT KHIT : Notes of the Pingla bird. 

KHODIAR MAT.V : Name of a goddess. 

KHODO : Lame. 

KHODO MAMO : Name of a minor deity. 

KHOJA : A class of Musalmans. 

KHOKHO : -^i' outdoor game played in the Deccan. 

KHUNTINI : An order of ghosts. 

KIDI : .\n ant. 

KILBIL : Note^ of the Pingla bird. 

KINKHAB : Silk worked with gold and silver flowers, brocade. 

KINNARI : An order of semi-divine beings. 

KTR.\TA: A fisherman. 

KISHORDAS: A name of Hanunvin. 

KODR.'V : Punetm-ed millet. 

KOH.ALA : Pumpkin. 

KOKAI : Name of a goddess. 

KOKIL : A cuckoo. 

KOKIL.WRAT.A : The festival of cuckoos which is held in the month of Ashddh after a lapse of 

twenty years. 
KOLAMB.vl : Name of a goddess. 
KOLH.Vl : Name of a goddess. 

KOLI : .\ primitive tribe of Hindus common in tlie Bombay Presidency. 
KOLO : .\ jackal. 
KOLK Vl : Name of a goddess. 
KOLU : t'ucurbita maxima. 
KONDI : A kind of earthen pot. 
KONDURI : .\ preparation of mutton. 

KORI : .A. new garment ; an unused earthen jar ; a small silver coin. 
IvOTHALI : Reticule. 

KOTW.vL: Name of an uiUouchal)le caste of Hindus. 
KOYATA : .\ wood bill. 

KR1SHN.\: The eighth incarnation of Vishilu. 
KRITIK.V: Name of a constcl'ation. 
KRIV.-V BH.VUDAI : Name of a deity. 

KSH.ATRIYA : The warrior class, the second of the fourfold divisions of Manu. 
KSHETRA : X holy place. 

KSHETR.M'.Vl. : The guardian spirit of fields; a kind of stone. 

KUBER : Tlio lord >>f winlth, tlio regent of the north and tho king of t\\eYakslias ani Kinnarai 
KUK.\D VEL : A kind of creeper. 
Kul: A totem ; a clan. 
KUI,.\-DKV.\TA : Family deity. 
KUL.\-nEVT : Family goddess 


KULADHARMA : A special worship of the family god or goddess of each family. 

KULATHI : A kind of com. 

KULERA : A mixture of wheat, oat or rice Hour, clarified butter aud sugar or molasses. 

KULKARXI: A village accomitant 

KUMBHA: Aquarius. 

KU.MBHAKARX : Name of a demon. 

KUMBHAR : A caste of potters. 

I'CUMBH.i.R.^X : A woman of the Kumbhar caste. 

KU.MBHAVA : Xame of a cattle disease. 

KUJIBHAVIVAHA : Marriage with an earthen jar. 

KUXBI : A cultivator. 

Kl'XD : A pond ; a pit ; a sacred pool. 

KCXDAL.AX : -A kind of magic circle. 

KUXD.\LI : .An astrological diagram of the position of planets at any particular time 

KUXDALIA : A name of Hanuman. 

Kt'XDI : A shoe-maker's earthen pot. 

KUXKU : Red powder. 

KUXTI : The first wife of L'andu. 

KUPOTSARGA: Digging a well for the benefit of the public — and abandoning one's right of 

ownersliip over it. 
KURANAXDI : Wheat flour lumps used in the ceremony of the Bodan. 
KURI : An implement for sowing corn. 
KURMI : Xame of a water nymph. 
KURUKSHETRA : The extensive plain near Delhi, the scene of] the great battle between the 

Kauravas and Pandavas. 
KUSHMAXD : An order of demi-gods. 

KUSUMBA : The dye prepared from the dried flowers of the Kusumba (Carthamus tinctorius). 
KUTRO : A dog. 

LADU : A sweet ball. 

LAOHURUDRA : A rite in honour of the god Shiva. 
LaHY.A. : Parched rice. 

LAKSHACHAXDI : A recitation ui honour of the goddess Parvati. 
LAKSHAMAXA : Brother of Rama. 
LAKSHJII : The goddess of wealth. 
LaLA HARDEV : Xame of a minor local deity. 
LaLO : Name of a field deit\-. 
L.\LO BHAGAT: Xame of a saint 
LaMAXDIVO : An iron lamp. 
LAMLAX : A branch of black magic. 
LAXKA : Ceylon. 

LaPSI : Coarse wheat flower fried in ghi and sweetened with molasses or sugar. 
LAVEXG : Clove. 

LaVAXI: a kind of ballad; plantation. 
LaWAXI : Plantation. 
LaVO : A Parasite. 
La\'!S ANT : A ghost of a widow. 
LIMDO : A tree, Alantas excelsa. 
LIMBO : Poisonous. 
LIXGA : Phallus. 
LIXGAM : See Linga. 
LIXGAYAT : -An individual of the Lingayat religion whose chief object of worship is Shiva. 


LUBAN : Ulibanum. 
LOBHAN : Incense powder. 
LOTA : A water pot. 
LUV.iNA : A caste of traders. 
LUXMI : See Lakshmi. 


MACHCHEXDRA XATH : Name of a saint. 

-MACHHI : Name of a water nymph. 

MaCHHO : Name of a goddess. 

:MACHHU : See Miichho. 

MADALIUN : A hollow bracelet. 

MAUAN: Cupid. 

MADHAVl : A village headman. 

MADHU : Name of a demon. 

MADHU PAVANTI : An order of ghosts. 

MAUHWaCHARYA: Name of a great saint who founded a sect ol Vaishnavisra. 

MAFAT : Useless. 

lIAF.\TIO : Useless. 

MAO : A grain, Pliaseolus mungo. 

MAGH : The eleventh month ni the Deccani Hindu ami the fourth month of tlie Gujanit Hindu 

calendar year. 
J1.\GHA : Name of a constellation. 

M.\(!HALO : A lamp of mud covered with leaves to represent the god of rain. 
MAH.iBHARAT : Name of an epic of the Hindus. 

MAHADEVA : A name of 8hiva. 
MAHA GIRA : Name of si minor deity. 

MAHAKALI : Name of a goddess. 

JIAH.AK.ALI NIRVAN TANTRA : Name of a work on Tantric philosophy. 

JI.AHALAKSHMI : Name of a goddess; Name of a ceremony in which the goddess is worshipped on 
tlie eighth day of the bright half of Ashvin. 

M.^HALAV.V SHRADDHA ; .\ shrdddha performed in the dark half of Bhddrapad in propitiation of 


MAHAMARI : Cholera goddess. 

MAH.VNT : A saint. 

MAHAPURUSH : .\n order of civil spirits. 

JIAHAR : An unclean caste of Hindus. 

MAHAR PURUSHA : A kind of stone. 

MAHAHAJ.A : A term of respectful corapellation applied to kings, religious heads, saints, etc. 

M.\HARAKSHASA : A class of demons. 

MAHARUDRA : A sacrifice in honour of Shiva. 

MAHARAURAVA : A kind of hell. 

MAHASHIVARATRI : The fourteentii day of the dark half of Mdgh, a fast day in honour of Shiva. 

MAHATMA : A saint. 

MAHATMYA : Greatness. 

JIAHE.SHA : A name of Shiva. 

JIAHESHVAR : A name of Sliiva. 

MAHI : Name of a demon. 

:\I AH IK AW ATT : Name of a goddess. 

M.\H()I).AYA : Name of a festival. 

MAIDAN : A plain. 

MAKAR.A ; Capricornus. 

M.AK.ARI : Name of a water nynipli. 

MAKHAR : A naily dressed up wooden frame. 


MAKl : Jlaize. 

MALAR : A musical mode. 

MALHARl : A name of Kandoba. 

MALI : Red lead. 

MALI : A caste of gai-denera or an iudividual of it. 

MALINDA : A sweet preparation of wheat flour fried in ghi. 

ilALIN : Unclean. 

MALLARI : A name of Khandoba. 

M.\LO : A bower. 

M.AMIKULA : An order of ghosts. 

MAMO : An order of ghosts ; a maternal uncle. 

MAN.AYA : Name of a deity. 

MANDAL : A group. 

M AND ALU : A circle. 

M.\NDAN MISHRA : Name of an ancient scholar. 

M.\NDAP : A bower. 

MANDA BHARANE : Filling in a magic circle as a protection from *!pirits. 

MANEK-STAJIBHA : The auspicious post of the marriage bower. 

MANCJ : An unclean caste of the Hindus. 

MAXGAI : Name of a goddess. 

MANGAL : Mars. 

MANGALA-GOURI : A ceremony performed by married girls for five successive years on every 

Tuesday of the month of Shrdvan. 
MANGALARATI : Movmg a lighted lamp round an idol. 
MANCJALSUTRA ; The lucky thread worn by married women. 
MANl : A jewel ; name of a deity. 
M.\N1DHAR : A snake. 
MANl MALLA : Name of a demon. 

MANKARI : The person entitled to certain honours and presents at village assemblies. 
MANKODA : A black ant. 
MANSA KHAVANTI : An order of ghosts. 
MANTRA : An incantation; a magic spell. 
MANTRA-vSH ASTRA : The science of incantations. 
MANTRI : An exorcist. 
MANTRIK : An exorcist. 

MANUSHYACHAR : An order of ghosts moving among men. 
MAR AN : A branch of black magic. 
MARGA : A path ; course. 
MARGAI : Name of a goddess. 
MARGASHIRSHA : The ninth month of the Deocani Hindu and the second month of the Gujarft 

Hindu calendar year. 
MARGI : A sect of Hindus. 

MARGI PANTHI : A follower of the Margi sect. 
MARI : Name of a goddess. 
JIARICHI : Name of a sage. 

MARIYUN : A ceremony for driving away insects. 
M.ARVO : Marjoram. 
MASUR : Lentil. 
MASIDA : An order of ghosts. 
MATA : A goddess. 
MATAJl : See MAta 

MATA ASHTAMI : The eighth day of the naiyiriUra. 
:MATARI ! Name of a goddess. 
MATH : A monastery. 


MATHBHAJI : A kind of green vegetable. 

MATl : Earth. 

JLVrRlKA : A mother; au order of semi-divine beings. 

MAUL! : Name of a goddess. 

MAIXYA VRATA : A vow of silence. 

MAX'AlJl : Gliost of a won. an dying with certain desires unfulfilled. 

MAYA : Illusion. 

MAYAKA: Name ot a goddess. 

MEDA: Manow. 

MEDINl : The earth. 

MEGH : A cloud. 

MECiHAKAJA ; The god of rains. 

MKGHLADDU : A sweet Ijall of wheat Bour fried in ghi. 

MEHL'LO : See Maghalo. 

MEKAIL : Name,of an angel. 

MELADI : An order of ghosts. 

MELDI : See Meladi. 

MELI VIDY'A : Sacrilegious art. 

MENA : A kind of bird. 

MERIT : Name of a mythological mountain. 

MESHA: Aries. 

BIHALSA : Name of a goddess. 

MH/VRJAI : Name of a. goddess. 

MHARLOBA : Name of a deity. 

MHASHYA : A species of water spirits. 

MHASOBA : Name of a village deity ; lord of ghosts. 

MIANA : A class of Musahn;ins. 

MINA: Pisces. 

MINDHAL : A kind of fruit. 

MIRI: Particle. 

MITHUN : Gemini. 

MIY'ALI : An order of ghosts. 

MOBHARA : A hollow stone used for threshing corn. 

MOC'HI : A caste of shoe-makers. 

MOCHINl : An order of ghosts. 

MOGRI : Rat -tailed raddLsli, 

MOHAN : -A branch of l)lack magic. 

MOHINI : A fascinating woman. 

MOHARO : The stone found in the head of the snake. 

MOHOR : Sec Moharo. 

MOKSHA : Salvation 

MOLANI : An order of ghosta. 

MOTAK.'VT : Name of a vow. 

MOR : A peacock. 

MORIA : .\n earthen bowl. 

MOT MAVALI : Mother Mary. 

MOTUDUKH : A kind of cattle disease. 

MOVA KHAR.AVA : Name of a cattle disease. 

MR IG : A deer ; name of a constellation. 

MRIGANKA : The moon. 


MRITYUNJAYA : Name of an incantation. 

MUCHKLT^D : Name of a sage. 

MUJAV.-\R : A sweeper of a mosque devoutly or piously fixed to it 


MUKTI : Salvation. 

JIUL : Name of a star. 

MULO : Raddish. 

MUNDA : A kind of wind. 

MUNGESHWAR 5IAHADEV : A name of Shiva. 

MUNGI MaTA : Name of a goddess ; dumb mother. 

MUNJA : Spirit of Brahman boy who dies imin^diataly aftar his thread ceremony, 

MURALl : A flute. 

MURDUXGA: Tabour. 

IIURLI : See Murali. 

MUSAL : A rice pounder. 

MUTH : The fist. 

JIUTH M.IR ANE : Throwing of a Iiandful of rice over wliich incantations have been repeated ; 

sending a bewitched lemon to a person to whom a disease is to be transferred 

or who is to be killed. 
MUV.A-KESHIBI : \ kind of cattle disease. 


NACHANI: A kind of grain. 

XADAPUDI: A coloured cord with a small parcel containing incense, red powder, etc. 
X.vD.vSADI : A cord and a robe. 

N.4G : A snake ; a species of serai- livin? baiu^js hilf m^n hilf sirpsnt? in form. 
NAGA : See Xiig. 

X,\GABALI : A propitiatory offering to snakes. 
XAGAR : A caste of Briihmans found in Gujarjit. 
XAGCH.vlIFA : A flower tree, Alpinia mutans. 
XaGDEV : The snake god, 
XAGKAXY.\ : A snake girl. 
NAG KESAR : Messua Ferrea. 

NAGMAtlA: A class of beggars who worship the snake. 
XAGXATH : Xame of a snake deity. 

NAG PANCHAJII : The fifth day of the bright half Shriiom, a holiday in homur of the snake deity. 
X.\GO: Shameless. 
NAGOBA : The snake deity. 
NAGV'EL : A kind of creeper. 

NAH^EDYA : An offering of some eatable to an idol. 
XAKSHATRA : A star ; a constellation. 
XALA : Xame of a mythological king. 
XaLPIR : Xame of a pir or Mahomedan saint. 

XAL SAHEB : A familiar name for the bearer, in the Muharam, of the Tabut-pole which termi- 
nates at the top in a ndl or horse-shoe member. 
NAMAX : Oil poured over the image of Hanumdn. 
XAMASKAR : Reverential or respectful address or salutation. 
XAXDA : the adoptive father of Krishna. 
NAXDARaJ : Xame of a mythological king. 
XAXDI: A bull. 

NaNDI SHR.iDDH.\ : A Shrdddha to the names, preliminary to any joyous occasion. 
XAXO: Small. 

XAO X.ARASIXG : An order of ghosts. 
XARA : Xame of a sage. 
X.vRAD ARTNI : Name of a divine sage. 
NARAK: Hell. 

XARAK-CHATURDASHI : The fourteentli day of tlie dark half of AsUvin. 
XARALI PAURXIMA : The cocoanut holiday, the fifteenth day of the bright half of Shfdmii. 
NARASIMHA: An incarnation of Vishnu in the form of half lion half min. 


NAKAYAN : Name of a sage. 

NARAYAXA BALI : A sacrifit-o in propitiation of evil spirits. 

NAKAYAX KAV At'H : A Iiyinn in lioaour of Vishnu. 

NAKAYAN NA(;AH.\LI: A kind i.f offering. 

NAI!KL-l'ri<XIM.\: See Xjirnli I'aurnima. 

N.-VHOUDIK.VLP.X : .\ kind of medicinal preparation. 

NAHKYA I'UA: A kind of incense. 

NAKSINHA: See Xarsimlin. 

N.\i;sl.\KA MKHPA: A (•elel>rHtcd saint of Ciujarat. 

NATAK : A (Ininm. 

NATHU : Tiwl. 

NAV.\CHAXDI : Niuni- of ii sacrifice. 

NAVA(!l!AHA: Tin- nine planets. 

NAVAGH.\HA«HAN'T1 : A ceremony iu propitiation of the nine planets. 

NA^'AKAUAN : Gift of a ship. 

NAVALA-DEVI: Name of a goddess. 

NAVA.Ml'THIl'M : A preparation of nino handful* of wheat. 

NAVARATKA: The first nine da\s of the nxonth of Aslivin lield sacred to Durga. 

NA\'ATEKl : A game of nine and thirteen. 

NEHADO : A hamlet of Bharvads or shepherds. 

NIAH : A kind of riee j^rown without ploughing. 

NILOTS.VKIJA : A kind of Shnkldha. 

NILOTSAVA : Nee Xilparviin. 

NlLPAliN'AX : A ceremony in propitiation of the spirits of deceased ancestors. 

NIRGUOI : A kind of plant. 

NIRMALA : Xanie of a goddess. 

NOL \EL : A kind of creeper. 

NKllSIXHA MANTHA: An incantation iu honour of Xrisiulia. 

NYASA : Gestnre. 

OGHAU: A fool. 

OKARINU : \'omitting : a kind of sheep disease. 

OLO : A species of birds. 

OMICAK JIAXUHATA : Name of a god. 


PADO : \ he-huffalo. 

PADl'KA: Impressions of feet on stones. 

PAl)\Ai- : Snak<•-^•our(l. 

PADWAL : Sec I'adval. 

PAJl'.SAX : A holiday of Jahis. 

PALAS : A tree, Butea frondosa. 

PAl/IM A'l'lt.V: A ceremony performed at the sowing season. 

PAl.K MAKAl): An order of jiliosts. 

PALIO : A pilhu'. A tonili creeled on the grave of a person wlio dies on a field of battle. 

PALUS : See palas. 

PAN : A betel leaf. 

I'ANC'HAK : Grouping of constellations lasting for five days. 

PANCHAKSHAKI: An exorcist. 

PAN('HAMHIT.\: .\ mixture of milk, curds, sugar, glii and honey. 

PANCHAKATXA: Five kinds of precious tl'.iugs, viz., gold, silver, copper, coral and pearls, 

PANt'HAVATAX : The five deities, Shiva. Vislmn, Surj^a, Ganpati and Devi. 

PANCH.OEVA: .^eel'aneluiyatan. 


PAXCHGAVYA : A mixture of tlie five products of the cow, 

PAXCHOPACHaR : The presenting in oblation to an idol of five articles, 

PAXDAVA : A term applied to the five sons of Pandu. 

PAXDHAR : Xame of a goddess. 

PAXDIT : A scholar. 

PAXDHRI : A kind of tree. 

P.\XG.\LA-DEVI : Xame of a goddess. 

PAXOTI : Certain peculiar conjunctions of planets ; name of a goddess, 

PAP AD: Wafer biscuits. 

PARADI : A disease-scaring basket ; a basket. 

P.\RAKAYAPRA\ESH : Entering the body of another, 

PARASHU : An axe. 

PARDESHI : A term applied to men from Upper India, usually low .caste. 


PARJAXYA-SHaXTI : A ceremony performed to secure rainfall. 

PARMaR : A clan of Rajputs. 

PARO : A kind of stone. 

PARSHAD VAIKUXTHA : Xame of a heavenly region, 

PARTHISHWAR : Lord of the earth ; a god. 

P.\RV.\TI : The consort of Shiva. 

PARWAXI : A festival. 

PASHUCH.\R : An order of ghosts moving among beasts. 

PASHUPATAKA : A weapon of Shiva. 

PASTAXA : The being disposed for use — vessels, etc. for idol worship, 

P.4T : A low wooden stool ; marriage witli a widow. 

PATaL : The nether world. 

PATHA : Recitation. 

PATIL : A village headman. 

PATIT-PAVAX : Purifier of the fallen. 

PATKA : .\ head scarf. 

PATLA : A low wooden stool. 

PAT LAV AXE : To marry a widow, 

PAURaXIC : As prescribed in the purdnas. 

PAUSH : The tenth month of the Deccani Hindu and the third month of the Gujarat Hindu 

calendar year. 
PAVAIYA : A sect of goddess worshippers. 
PAVTE : A kind of grain. 
PEDHE : A kind of sweets. 
PEDI : A small heap or Idpsi. 
PEESA : An order of ghosts. 
PENDA : .\.kind of sweets. 
PETTOD : A kind of cattle disease. 
PHALGUX : The twelfth month of the Deccani Hindu and the fifth month of the Gujarsit Hindu 

calendar year, 
PHAXAS : Tlie jack fruit. 

PIDHaX /iRATI : The ceremony of substituting night ornaments on an idol for the costly orna- 
ments of the day. 
PILUDI : A kind of tree. 
PIXD : A rice ball. 
PIXDA : See Pind. 
PIXGLA : A species of birds. 
PIXJAR : Red powder. 
PIPAL : A tree, Ficus religiosa. 
PIPALESHW.\R MAHaDEV : A name of Shiva. 


FIR : A Muliammadan name for a saint. 

PIRAS PIPALO : Thespesia populwa. 

PISHACHA : An evil spirit. 

PITAR : A spirit of a doceosed ancestor. 

PITHI : Turmeric powder. 

PITPAPDO : Glossocardi Boswellia. 

PITRA: Manes. 

PITRI : An ancestral spirit. 

PITRI SHR.iDDHA: A Shrdddha in propitiation of the ancestral spirits. 

PITRRIYA : A deceased ancestor. 

PfTRU PAKSHA : Manes' fortnight, the dark half of tlie month of Bhddrapad. 

POHOR : A measure of time equal to three hours. 

POLIO : Hollow. 

POLO : Hollow. 

PONDHAR : Name of a goddess. 

POPAT : A parrot. 

POSHI : A class of chuiels, an order of ghosts. 

POTHLA : An exorcist ; the bull of Shiva. 

POTHIO : A bull. 

PRACHETAS : A patronymic of Manu. 

PR.\DAKSHINA : Circumambulation. 

PR ADOSHA : The thirteenth day of the dark lialf of a month. 

PRALH.iD : The son of the demon Hiranj-akashipu. He was a great devotee of Visliaa. 

PRALAMBASUR : Name of a demon. 

PRANA : Life. 

PRaNA-POKA : Death wail. 

PRASAD : Consecrated food, 

PRASTHANA : See Pastana. 

PRATAB : An order of ghosts, 


PRAYOCJA : Performance ; experiment. 

PRETA : A goblin; spirit of a person dying a sudden or accidental death. 

PUDINA : Mentha Sativa. 

PUJA : Worship. 

PUJARI : A worshipper. 

PUJYA : Deserving to be worsliipped. 

PULAP : Name of a sage. 

PXJLASTYA : Name of a sage. 

PUNARA^ASU : Name of a constellation. 

PUNDARIK : Name of a mythological snake. 

PUNEMA : The full moon day of a month. 

PUNJI : Refuse. 

PUNJO : Refuse. 

PUNYAHA WACHAN : A particular ceremony performed on festive occasions. 

PUNYA STHANA : A holy place. 

PUNYA TITHI : The deajli niuiiversary of a Sanydsi or saint. 

PUR AN : The name of a certain class of sacred lioolis ascribed to Vyjisa and containing the whole 

body of Hindu mytliology. 
PITRBHAYA : A tenn applied to persons from Upper India. 

PURN/UIUTI : An offering into the fire of a handful of rice, ghi, coooanuts and some other articles. 
PURNIMA : .S'ee Paurnima. 
PURNA TITHI : A complete day. 
PURUSHOTTAM : Intercalary month. 
PURVABHADRAPAD.\ : Name of a constellation. 


PURVA-FALGUXI : Xame of a constellation. 
PURVAJA : An ancestor. 
PURVASHADHA : Xame of a constellation. 
PUSHKAR : Name of a snake. 
PUSHYA : Name of a constellation. 


RABARI : A caste of shepherds. 

RADHA : A man dressed in woman's clothes as a dancer; name of a sweetlieart of Krisluia 

RADIO : Crying. 

RAFDA : A kind of jujube tree. 

RAGATIO : An order of ghosts. 

RAHU : A demon with the tail of a dragon wliose lioad was severed from lii^ li,> ly 5,, y; .1 

The head and tail, retaining then- separate existence, were transferred to the planetary 
heavens, and 'lecame, tlie first, the eightli planet, and the second (Kotn) tli^ ninth, 

R AINADEVI : Name of a goddess. 

RAJAH : A king. 

RAJAYAJNA : A kind of sacrifice. 

RAJBAI MATA : Name of a goddess. 

R.\.JBHOG ARATI : Tire ceremony of offering dainties and cooke ', foo 1 to tlie "o 1,-. 

RAJPUTANI : Wife of a Rajput ; a Rajput woman. 

BAKHADI : A piece of silk thread. 

RAKHEVALIO : An order of gliosts. 

RAKSHASA : A demon. 

R ALA : Panic seed. 

RALE : Panic seed. 

RAM.4LA.SHaSTR.-V : Tiie science of divining hy means of figures or lines and dice. 
RA1IANA\'AMI : Tlie ninth day of tlie Ijright half of Chaitra celebrated as the birth day of Rama. 

RAMANUJA : Name of a great saint and philosopher who founded a sect of Vaishnavism. 

RAMAYANA : An epic poem by Valmiki describing the exploits and adventures of Rama. 

RAMCHANDRA : A name of R^ma. 

R.4MESHWAB : A name of Shiva. 

RaMNATH : Name of a deity. 

RANDAL : Name of a goddess who presides over child-birth. 

RaNDHAN CHHETHA : The cooking sixth, the sixth day of the dark half of Shrd'oan. 
RANGPANOHAJII : The fifth day of the dark half of Phdlgim on which colonrel water is thrown.; 
RANJANI : A kind of tree. 

RANNA DEVI : Name of a goddess who oresidps over chil.l-'nrth, 
RANO : A Lord. 
RASHI : Signs of the Zodiac. 
RATANVO PARO : A kind of stone. 
RATANWA : A kind of skin disease. 
RATH : A charriot. 

RATHA SAPTAMl : The seventh day of the bright half of M,i;/h. 
RATNA : A jewel. 

RAI^L : A caste of Hindus or an individual of it. 
RAVAL : See Raul. 

R AVALNaTH : Name of a spirit ; name of a village deity. 
BAVAN : Name of the demon king of Lanka or Ceylon. 
RAVI : The sun. 
RAWALNATH : See Ravahiath. 
RAY AN : A tree, M^jjsops hexandra. 
REK|JA : A line. S| 

ii if 


xxviii APPKN'DIX 

RELA : A stream. 

REVATI: Name of a constellation. 

RKW.VDl : A preiiaration of sesamiim and sugar. 

RIKTA : Unfruitful, inauspicious. 

RISHI PUNCH. \.M1 : I'll.- liftli '!"> of th.- bright half of Bhddrapad. 

RITU : A season. 

ROHIN'I : Name of a constellation. 

ROPANI : Transplanting;. 

ROT : A loaf prepared from eight kinds of grain. 

ROTAL : Womanish. 

RUDK.A : An order of simi-divine beings. 

RU1)H.\BHISHEKA : The ceremony of pourinj; water in a constant stream over the image of 
Shiva for eleven consecutive days and nights. 

RU1)R.\.KSH.\ : A tree sacred to Shiva, EIboCl rpus ganitrus. 

RUDRAKSH.\ MALA : A ro.sary of 108 beads of tl>e rudrdkaha wood. 

RUDRAYAG : -V sacrifice in honour of the god Shiva. 

RUI : A tree, calotropis gigantea. 

RUPO: Handsome. 

RUTU : Name of a sage. 

RUTUSHANTI : The marriage consxmimation ceremony. 


SABHA : A meeting. 

SaDASaTI PANOTI : A pancli extendm- over seven years and a half. 

SaDHAN : Accomplishment. 

SADHU: A saint. 

SAGAR : A king of the Solar race, an ancestor of Rama. 

SAHAN : A levigating slab. 

S.AH.ASRABHOJ.^N : Feeding a thousand Br;ihmans. 

SAITaN : An order of ghosts. 

SAIYED : A name for Musalmans directly descended from the Prophet. 

S.\KH.ARADO : -A. kind of disease. 

S.AKHOTIA : Name of a tree. 

S.AKIXI : An order of ghosts. 

SAKSHI : Witness. 

SALAM : The word used in salutation liy and to Muhammadans and other people not Hindu. 

SALB.AYA : Name of a deity. 

S.\>IACHARI: The death anniversary 

SAMADH : The edifice which is erected over the burial-place of a Snnydsi or saint ; deep and 

devout meditation. 
SAMADHI : ^See Samadh. 
SAil-AT : A brass lamp. 
S.\MANY.\ PX'J.A : Ordinary worship. 
SAJIBANDHA : Spirit of a Brahman "ho dies without ai\ heir and whose funeral rites have not 

been performed. 
SAMELU : .\ log of wood. 
S.vMISHY.A : Entering the divuie ordiJ-. 

SAMPAT SHANIWaR : Wealth-givuig Slainiwdr, a Saturday in the month of Shrdvan. 
SAMUDRA: The sea. 
SAM\'AT : A year. 

S.AMVATSAR : A year : .\ period of three cycles of twenty years each, that is sixty years. 
SAMXATSAKI : Death anniversary. 
SANATKV.MAK : One of the four sons of Hiahiua. 


SAXCHAL: A kind of salt. 

SAXDHYA : The morning, noon or evening prayers of a Brahman. 

SAXDHYA ARATI : Offerings of Jlilk, sugar antl cakes to the gods in the evening, 

SAMP AT: DeUrium. 

SANKAL: A chain. 

SAXKAR : A stone. 

SAXKASTI CHATURTHI : Tlie fourtli huiar day of every dark fortnight. 

SANKRfVNT : Transit or passage of the sun or a planet from one sign of the zodiac mto another. 

SAXKR.Os'TI : See Sankrant. 

SAXYASI : The Brahman of the fourth order, the religious mendicant. 

.S.\P1XDI: The offering of a ball of rice, etc., to the spirit of a deceased relative, cornmonlv ou 

the twelfth day after his decease. 
SAPTaHA : A perusal or reading through of a purdii or other sacred book m seven consecutive 

SAPTAHA-P.iRAYAN: See Saptaha. 
SAPTA-RISHI : Ursa Major (the seven stars of which are supposed to be the seven great saint 

Mariehi, Atri, Angiras, Pulastya, Pulaha, Kratu and Vasishtha.) 
SAPTA SAXI : Xame of an mcarnation, 
SARAXGDHA : A kind of fruit. 
SARAS\'ATI : The goddess of leammg. 
SARI: A robe. 
SARPA BANDHAXE : A process by which a snake can Ije prevented from entering or leaving a 

particular area. 
SARVA^aKSHI : The observer of all thmgs. 
SATAP : A kind of tree. 
SATARSIXGO : X'ame of a goblin. 

SATEJI : The seventh day of the bright or dark half ot a month. 
SaTERI : Name of a goddess. 

SATHARA: The place in the house wliere a corpse is placed. 
SATHIA : An auspicious figure drawn on t)ie floor. 
SATSAXG : Contract witli the righteous. 
SAT\'aI : Name of a goddess ; the ghost of a woman. 
SATY.A XARAYAX : Name of a deity ; a vow of that name. 
SATYA VIXAYAK : A name of a Oanpati; a vow of that name. 
SATYAWAX : Xame of a mythological king. 
SAVDaMINI : The lightning. 
iSAUXDAD : The Shami tree, Prosopis spicigera. 
SA^'AJ : A wild animal. 

SAVaPATI : Weighing about sis pound.s anil a cjnaiter. 
SAVITA: The sun. 

SAVITRI : A mythological woman celebrated for lier de\otiou to her liusband. 
SAWAJS'EKARIX : Xame of a goddess. 
SaWAR : A kind of tree. 
SaWKaR : A money-lender. 
aXVO : Sewed. 

SaYUJJA : Jlerging into the divine form. 
SER : A measure of weight. 
SERAJA : A kind of gift. 
SEVA : Vermicelli. 
SEVAK : A disciple, a follower. 
SEVAK.A : -See Sevak. 
SHADaXADA : X'ame of a goddess. 
SHAKARIO : Xame of a cattle disease. 
SHAKINI : An order of ghosts. 


SHAKTA MATA : Name of a goddess. 

SHAKTI : The energy of active power of n deity personified as his wife ; as Pdrvati of Shiva 

SHAKTIMATA : Name of a goddess. 

SHAKTI-PAXTHI : .A follower of the Shakti or Shiikta sect that « those who worship a divine 

energy under its feminine personification. 
SHAKTI YAf! : A <<acrifioe in honour of Shakti. 
.SH.iLICRAM : .A sacred stone supposed to represent Vishnu. 
.SHALUXKI : A species of singing birds. 
SHANI: Saturn. 
SHANOAR ARATI : The ceremnuy of laUiiig off the idols night garments and putting on others 

for the day. 
SHAXKAR.4C'HARYA : The designatidti nf tln' celebrated teacher of the Vedant philosophy. 
SHAXKASUR : Xame of a demon. 
SH.VXKHASUR : Xame ofa demon. 
SH.VXKHIXI : An order of gliosts. 

SH.VXTAXU : A king of the lunar raci' wlio married Ganga and Satyaxali. 
SHAR.iDIAN: The dark haU' ..i' the month »{ Hhddrapad. 
SHARAXC : Tlie bow of Vishnu. 

SHARAD PUNEMA : Tlie full-moon day of Ashvin. 
SHARAD-RITU: Tl),- Autumn. 
SHASTRA: Script uie. 

SH.\TACH.\XDI : .Vn incantation in honour of the goddess. 
SHATAXJI\'A : Live for a hundred years. 
SHATATARAKA : Xame of a constellation. 

SHATCHANDI : An incantation in honour of the goddess thandi. 
SHES BHARANE : Xamo of a ceremony. 
SHEXDtJR : Red lead. 

SHESH XAG : The snake of one ihmisand hoods who supports the eartli. 
SHEVARI : A kind of tree. 
SHIKHAXDI : Amba born as the daugliter of Drupada. She was oiven out to be, and brought up 

as, a male child. 
SHIKOTAR : Name of a goddess. 
SHILI : Stale. 

SHILI S.VrEM : The stale seventh, the seventh day of tlio dark half of Shrdvan, 
SHIRALSHET : Xame of an ancient Vani or trader who became a king and reigned three and a 

half ghalika (a measure of time). 
SHISHIR-RITU : The cold season. 

SHIT : The fowl tied to the top of the bamboo planted in the pit of the /loli lire. 
SHITALA ASTAKA : A hymn in praise of the goddess Shitala. : A holiday observed by women. 
SHITAL.iUEVI : The small-pox goddess. 
SHITALA MATA : 6'ee Shitaliidevi. 
SHITAL-SAPTAMX : .See Shili Sdtem. 
SHIX'A : The third god of the Hindu Trinity. 
SHIVALAXGI : Xame of a plant . 
SHIVA-MUTHA : A vow in which handfuls of (torn are ul'foroJ by iiiarrit>J girls to the god Vishnu 

on every Monday in the month of Shrdvan. 
SHI\'AR.4TR.\ : The fourteenth day of tlie daiU half of every month sacred for the worship of Sliiva. 
SHIVARATRI : See Shivaratra. 
SHIWAXI : A kind of tree. 

SHIWAR : An offering of boiled rice mixed wiilj cui-.U ; an oliVring of a goat or fowl. 
SHLOKA: A stanza, a verse. 
RHOnASirOP ACHAR: The si.xteen ways of doing liomagv. 


SHOKA-PAGLAN : Morning foot prints. 

SHRaVAD : A kind of shrub. 

ISHRAVAK : A term applied to tlie members of tl\e Jain religion. 

SHRA VAX : The fifth month of the Deccani and the tenth month of tlie Gujarat Hindu calendar 

.SHRaVAXI: The ceremony of renewing the sacred thread. 
SHRAWAXA: Xarae of a constellation. 
SHRI DUTTA: Xame of a deity. 
iSHRIXGAR ARATI: ^S'ee Shangar iirati. 
SHRIXGHI: Xame of a sage. 
SHR1S.\TYAXARaY.\N: Name of a deity. 
SHUDDHA: Pure; the bright half of a month. 
SHUDRA: The last of the four-fold divisions of Manu. 
SHUKAMtTNI : Name of a sage. 
SHUKRA : Venus. 

.SIDDHA: An order of semi-divine beings. 
SIDDHA PURUSHA : A magician. 

SIDDHI : Accomplishment; the acquisition of supernatural powers; name of a wife of Ganpati. 
SIDDHI K.ARAN : Name of a book in which Dharmaraja keeps an accoimt of the good and bad 

actions of men. 
SIDHA : Uncooked articles of focnl, 
.SIDIO : Xigro-like. 
fSIKAX : .A. sling. 
SIKE : A sling. 
SIKOT.\RU: .S'ee .Sikoturu. 

SIKOTURU : Ghost of a woman dying with certain desires unfulfilled. 
iSIM.-vXT ; The first pregnancy ceremony. 
.SIXDHAVAR : Xarat- of a goddess. 
.SIXDUR : Red lead. 
SIX HA : A lion ; Leo. 
SINHIKA : The mother of Riihu. 
SITA: The consort <if Rilma. 

SI\\'A BaXDHANE : Binding the boundary-name of a ceremony. 
SIWO : Sewn. 

S^LvRTA AGXI : The fire which Is kept constantly burning and worshipped during the Chdiunnds, 
SSGD-IHTSTJ : The ceremony of loosening the munja (string) from the louts of a Brahman. 
iSOLAXKI : Xame of a clan of Rajjiuts. 

SOL.\ SOM\'aR-^'RATA : A vow observed on sixteen successive Mondays. 
SOJIAPA : Name of a water nymph 

SOIIAVATI-AMAVASYA : The fifteenth day of the dark half of a montli falling on Monday. 
SOMAGA : Name of a religious ceremony. 
SUXI : A caste of goldsmiths or an individual of it. 
SORRO : Sulphuret of antimony. 
SOSHI : Xame of a class of chudels. 
SOVALEN : A silk garment. 
SPHATHCA MANI : A crystal stone. 
STAiIBH.AN : A branch' of black magic. 
STHAX.A.: Locality. 
STHAXA-DEVA : A local deity. 
STHAXADEVATA : See Sthana-deva. 
STHAPAX : Installation. 
SUD : The bright half of a month. 
SUDARSHAX : See Sudarshan chakra. 
SUDARSHAN CHAKRA : The discus of Vishnu. 


SUDHA : Xectar. 
SUDH.VKAK : The moon. 
SUDYAMAX : Name of a mythological king. 
JSUGAD : A little earthen vessel. 
SUKAL : A pleiitil'ul harvest. 
tiULlO : All iirder of ghosts. 
SULEIMAN 1 PARO : A kind of stone. 
.SUJIATJIA (.iAXESH : A name of (ianpati. 
SUN.A : Ijnorcupied. 
SUN.4KU : A kind of cattle ( 
SUNKAl : Name of a goddess. 
KUNTH : Dry ginger. 
SUI'ADUN : .A winnowing fan. 
SUR.^ : Liquor. 

SUR.\K.\NO : Twisted iron wire. 

SUR.-^M : .\ niorphophallus campalatus (elephant foot). 
SUR.ANG : .\ kind of tree. 

SURDH.\N : (iliost of a male member dying with certain of his desires lufulfilled. 
SURMO : See Sorro. 

8UROPURO : A spirit of one who meels death oa a field of battle. 
SURYA : The smi. 

SURYA KAV.^CH : A hymn in honour of the Sun. 
?URYA-VR.\T : .\ vow in lionour of the Sun. 

SHTAKI : One ceremonially i rapure on account of the death of a relative. 
SX^TAR : A caste of arpenters or an individual of it. 
SUTI : An order of ghosts. 

SUTTEE : A woman who burns herself on the funeral pyre of her husband. 
SUVA : Au ingredient used in preparing spices. 
SUWARN : Gold. 

SUWASINI : An unwidowed woman. 
SWAMI : A lord, a term applied to saints. 

S\\'.\MI MAH.vR.vJ : An epithet of Dattatraya or Sliri Dutta. 
SWAMINAR.\YAN : A sect of Hindus. 
"SWAPNA : A dream. 
SWAR<iA : Heaven. 

SWASTIKA : .^ kind of mystical figure. 
SWATI : Name of constellation. 
SWAY.\MBHU : Self-existent. 
SVVAYAMVAR : A maiden's choice marriage. 

TADI.\ : A Iruit of the fan-palm. 

TADULl : 'I'lie full moon day of Ashadh. 

TAKSH.\K : Name of a snake. 

TAL : A kind of cymbal. 

TALABDIA KOLI : A sub-division of the Koli tribe. 

TALKHaMBA : A ghost of an unmarried Shudra. 

TALI : .\ plate. 

T.\L1 BH.^RANE : -A rite performed in honour of the god Khandoba. 

TALO B HAG AT: Name of a great saint. 

TAMASH.'^ : A diverting exhibition ; a show, play, farce, mock-fight, etc. 

TAMH.^N : .\ Hat .saucer-like metal plate. 

TAMJAI : Name of a 

TANYATUN : Lightning. 

APPENDIX xxxiii 

TAPAKESHWAR : A name of Mahadev. 

TARa-BaRAS : The star twelfth, the twelfth day after the death of a person. 

TARIA TAV : Periodical fever. 

TARPAN : An offering of water. 

TAV : A sheet of paper. 

TAVA : A cake fried in oil in a pan. 

TAVO : Flat unleavened loaves. 

TAXAJII : Tiie ghost of a woman dying in child-bed or menses, 

TH.\KORJI : A name for the Deity. 

THaL : A dish. 

THaXA : A station. 

THAXAK : LocaUty. 

THOR: .\ tree, Euphoria uerifoha. 

TID : A locust. 

TIL : Sesamum. 

TILA : The sectarial mark made with coloured earths or unguents upon the forehead. 

TILAD : A singing sparrow, 

TIXDOTAX : A kind of creeper. 

TIRTHA : Water used in bathing an idol ; a holy place. 

TOL.-\ : A weight amounting to 210 grains. 

TOXD BHUT : .\n order of evil spirits. 

TOSHl : A class of chudels. 

TRAVEXI : A confluence of three rivers. 

TRET.iYUGA : The second yuga or age according to the Hindu scriptures. 

TRI.J : The third day of tlie bright or dark half of a month. 

TRIPIXDI : A kind of Shrdddha. 

TRIPURaSUR: Xamb of a demon. 

TRIPURI-PAURXIMA : The full moon-day of Kdrtik. 

TRISHAXKU : Xarae of a king of the Solar race. 

TRI.SHUL : A trident. 

TUCHAKA : A mystical method. 

TULA: Libra. 

TCJLSHf — VRAT : .\ vow in honour of the Tulshi or s.veet basil plant. 

TULSI : The sweet basil. 

TUXGJAI : Xame of a goddess. 

TURABAT : A tomb. 


UBHI : Standing; an order of ghosts. 

UCHATAN : A branch of black magic. 

UCHCHATAN : See Uchatan. 

UDA : A species of water spirits. 

UDAK SHAXTI : Propitiation by water. 

UJANI : A ceremony in propitiation of the village go Js. 

UJJAXI ; A festival in honour of the god Indra. 

UKARDI : Earth with which the marriage altar is built. 

UKO: A dung-hill. 

UJIA MAHESH : The god Mahadev and his wife Parvati ; name of a vow in honour of them. 

UMBAR : The Indian fig tree. 

UMPI : Name of a Nag girl. 

UNAI MaTA: Name of a goddess. 

UNDAR : A mouse. 

TINT : A camel. 

UP.ADEVA: Ademi-god. 



UPAKARMA : The ceremony of renewing the sacred thread. 
URAS : A fair held in lionour of a Mahomedan saint. 
UTAR : A sacrificial offering. 
UTTANAPAD : Name of a mythological king. 
UTTAKA-BHADRAPAD.\ : Name of a constellatiou. 
UTTARA-FALGUNI : Name of a constellation. 
UTTAR.ASH.iDHA : Name of a ooustellation. 

VACCH.\DO : The spirit supposed to cure hydrophobia. 

VACCHARO : 6ee \'aCchado. 

VACHO: Even. 

VAD : The banyan tree; the dark lialf of a month. 

VADAN : Fried cakes. 


VADYAJAI : Name of a goddess. 

VAO.iDNAR : One who beats musical instruments like drums. 

VAGGAYA : Name of a deity. 

VAGH : A tiger. 

VAGHAMBARI : Name of a goddess. 

VAGHARAN : A woman of the Vdghri caste. 

VAGHESHWARX MATA : Name of a goddess. 

VAGHRI : A casle of Hindus. 

VAGHUR DEVI: Name of a goddess. 

VAGHVIR : The spirit of a person killed by a tiger. 

VAGHYA : A male cliild offered to the god Khandoba. 

VAIRAGI : A recluse. 

VAISHAKHA : The second month of the Deccani Hindu and tha seventh month of the Gujarat 

Hindu calendar j'ear. 
VAISHNAVA : The sect of Hindus devoted to Vishnu. 
VAISHVADEV : An oblation of boiled rice into the fire. 
VAISHYA : A trader, the third of the four- fold divisions of Manu. 
VAITAL : An order of demi-gods. 
VAITALIKA : An attendant of the god Shiva. 
VAIVASWAT MANU : Name of the seventh Maau now reigning. 
VAJRA : Adamant. 
VAJRABAI : Name of a goddess. 
VAJRABATTU : A kind of bead. 
V.\JRAMAY.\ : Adamantme. 
VAJRESHWAHI : Name of a goddess. 
VAJRESWARI : See Vajreshvari. 
VALAM : A mock bridegroom in the Holi festival. 

V.\LAMA VAL.'VMI : .\ procession of a mock marriage in the Holi festival. 
VAL.\MI: .\ mock bride in the Holi festival. 
VALAND : A caste of barbers or an individual of it. 
VALGO SAMACHARI : Death anniversary. 

VALLABHACH.4RYA : A great saint and scholar who founded a sect of Vaishnavisra. 
VALO : A kind of cattle disease. 
VALU : Eccentric. 
VAMA-MARGI : A follower of tho I'dma-mdrga that is a mode of worship in which the idol is 

worshipped by the left hand, liquor drunk, etc., etc. 
VAM.\N : .V dwarf; name of tho fifth incarnation of Vishnu. 
VANA-SHASTHI : Name of a Holiday. 
VANTRI : An order of ghosts. 


VANZIAPANA: Barrenness. 

VARADANI : Name of a goddess. 

VARADHAN : Name of a deity. 

VARAH : A boar. 

VARAHA-SANHITA : Name of a book. 

VARSHAKITU : The rainy season. 

V.vRUL : The whife ant-hill. 

VASANA : Desire. 

VASANTAPANCHAMI : The fifth day of the bright half of Mdgh. 

VASANT-RITU : The spring. 

VASH : An oblation of rice and sweets offered to crows. 

VASHIKARAN : A branch of black magic. 

VASHISHTHA : Name of a sage. 

VASTU : A religious rite performed on entering a new house. 

VASTDEVATA : The guardian spirit of dwelling places. 

VASTUN : -See Vastu. 

VASTUPUJAN : See Vastu. 

VASU : A bull-calf or bull branded and set at liberty. 

VASUB.4RAS : Tli9 twelfth day of the bright h*If of Aahvin. 

VASUDEVA : Name of the father of Krishna. 

VASU-DWADASI : See VasubAras. 

VASUKI : Name of a snake. 

VASTU SH.iNTI : See Vastu. 

VATA-SAVITRI VRAT : Name of a vow observed by women on the full moon day of Jyeshlha.- 

VATI : A small metal cup. 

VATKI : See Viiti. 

VAV : A reservoir of water; a tank. 

V.iYALI ; Eccentric. 

VAYU : Wind; the deity presiding over the wind. 

VAYUSUTA : A name of Maruti. 

VEDA : Name of the scriptures of the Hindus. 

VEDATR.Wl : The three vedas, Rik, Yajus and Sama. 

VEDHA : Malign influence. 

VEDIC : Relating to the Vedas; as enjoined in the Vedas. 

VEHALA : A tree. Bel eric Myrobalan. 

VELAN : A stick. 

VELO : A creeper. 

VETAL : The lord of ghosts; name of a village deity. 

VETRASARPA : A cane stick with an image of a snake at its end. 

VIDA-SUPARI : Betel nut and leaves. 

VIDYUT : Lightning. 

VAJAYADASHAMI : Tlie tenth day of the bright half of Ashviri. 

VIJLI : Lightning. 

VIKRAM : Name of a king. 

VIM AN : A celestial car. 

VINAYAK-CHATURTHI : The fourth day of the bright half of every month. 

VINCHI : A female scorpion. 

VIR : A male fiend; ghost of an unmarried Kshatriya. 

VIRA : An order of ghosts ; name of a village deity. 

VISHA: Poison. 

VISHAKHA : Name of a constellation 

VISHESHA PUJA : Special worship. 

VISHI : A cycle of twenty years. 

VISHNU : The second god of the Hindu Trinity. 


VISHNUSAHASRANAMA. : A book contaiiuiig tlie thousaud names of Vishnu. 
VISHNUYAGA : A sacrifice iu lionour of Viahnu. 
VISHOTAK : Nam 3 of a disease. 
VISHVAMITRA : Name of a sage. 

VISHWARUPA : That exists in all forms, an epithet of Vishnu. 
VISHWESHWAR : A name of Shiva. 
VISWATI : .An order of ghosts. 
VITHOB.A : Name of a god. 
VISUCHIK.V ; Name of a cholera goddess. 
Vn'AXCHARA : An order of ghosts. 
VRAT : A vow. 

VRIKOD.-VR.\ : Wolf-bellied, an epithet of Bhima. 
VRINDA : Name of the wife of Jalandhar, a demon. 
VRISCHIKA: Scorpion. 
VRISHABHA : Taurus. 
VRITRASAR : Name of ademon. 
VRUNDA : See Vrinda. 

\"YATIP.\T : The seventeenth of the Astrological Yoga (the twenty-seventh part of a circle 
measured on the plane of the Ecliptic). 


WAD : The banyan tree. 

WADI : An enclosed piece of meadow-field or garden ground. 

WaGH-BaRAS : The twelfth clay of Aahvin. 

WAUHE : Mall' children offered to the god Khandoba. 

WAGHESHWARI : Name of a village goddess. 

WAGHJAI : Name of a deity. 

WACiHOBA : .\n order of ghosts. 

AVAGRESHW.-VRI : Name of a village goddess. 

WAGHYA : Name of a deity ; a raalo child offered to the god Khandoba. 

WAMAN-DWADASHI : The twelfth day of the bright half of Bhddrapad. 

WAXI : A trader ; a general name for all castes of traders i. e., banyas. 

WAXPRASTA : X Brahman in the third order of his life ; a hermit in general. 

WARUL : An ant-hill. 

WATA : The Banyan tree. 

WATA-P.\URNIMA : The full moon day of Ji/eshtha. 

WUDA : Incense, 


YADNA : See Yajna. 

Y.\UXOPAVIT; The sacred thread worn by Brahnians. 
Y'ADXY'A : .See Yajna. 

YAJAM.AN : A host ; a person performing a sacrifice. 
YAJN.'V : A sacrifice. 

Y'AKSH.'V : A class of demi-gods, attendant on Kubera and employed in guarding his treasures. 
YAKSHIXI : .\ female Yaksha ; a fairy. 
YALLAMM.\ : Name of a goddess, 
Y'AMA : The God of death. 

\'.\M.A.DUTA : .\ messenger of the god of death. 

Y'AMAGHANT.A : A Yog or conjunction of times, viz., a Sunday-falling upon the second day of the 
bright or dark half of a month ; a Friday falling upon the third lunar day, 
etc., etc. 
YA.MALOKA : The region of Yama. 
Y'AM.\PURI : The city of the god of death. 
YANTR.V : A mystical fornuila or diagram. 

APPENDIX xxxvii 

YOGA : Roligious and abstract meditation. 

YOGA MARGA : Tlie path of meditation. 

YOGA-SUTRA : Name of a work by Pdtanjali containing aphorisms of tlie science of Yoga. 

YOGAVASHISTHA : Xame of a work on pliilosophy. 

YOJAX : A measure of distance equal to eight miles. 

YUBHISHTHIK : An epitliet of Dliarma, the eldest of tlie Paiula\ a brothers. 

Z^vJVIHjiDl : A female spirit guarding the village gates. 

ZAMPAH.ADI : An order of ghosts. 

ZAXZ.VKKA : Name of a goddess. 

Z.\NZIRA: A kind of magic hicantation. 

ZAR: Fever. 

ZARJVIAN ZAR VAN: A ceremony in which a woman fetches water for the IJrst time after delivery, 

ZILAKESHWAK : A name of JIahadeva. 

ZINI: Small. 

ZOD: An order of ghosts.